Study Abroad in Asia

Michelle Kordupel; Class of 2019
Location: Beijing, China
Program: Chi Institute’s Acupuncture in China
Dates: May 10 – 23, 2017
After completing an online course this past Spring, a few of my classmates and I traveled to Beijing, China for hands-on training in veterinary acupuncture as part of the Chi Institute’s Small Animal Veterinary Acupuncture Program. Led by experts in the field, we spent two days reviewing Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM) concepts and acupoints, followed by two days of lab work. We received personal instruction on acupoints, acupuncture technique, and practiced making holistic treatment plans from a TCVM diagnosis. The ability to practice my acupuncture technique surrounded by experienced clinicians who were willing and ready to help – not judge – me, was an invaluable experience. I have become vastly more confident in my acupuncture knowledge and skills and I am excited to pursue further education in TCVM.


Sarah Roberts; Class of 2018
Location: Elephant Nature Park, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Program: World Vets
Dates: July 31 – August 8, 2016
My trip to Elephant Nature Park with World Vets was the most amazing experience I’ve had to date.  ENP is home to 69 elephants, over 450 dogs, over 300 cats, horses, cattle, goats, rabbits, monkeys, and more!  I went into the trip thinking I would be doing mostly husbandry while learning general elephant information. However, my expectations were far exceeded!  I was able to assist the Thai veterinarians, Thai veterinary students, and summer veterinary student externs from the US with elephant treatments and wound care daily.  There were several elephants at ENP with land mine injuries that needed daily care and medication application.  There were also several elephants with abscesses that needed wound flushing and care daily.  Though elephant medicine was a large part of daily treatments, there were also horses with foot problems such as abscesses that needed medical treatment daily and a small animal clinic full of dogs and cats that needed spays/neuters and daily medications.  In the small animal clinic, I was able to provide treatments for these dogs and cats and was able to spay my first cat and neuter both a cat and a dog! When my group wasn’t helping with medical treatments, we were giving dogs in a local village heartworm medication, exploring local schools and Buddhist temples, learning about Thai culture, and learning more about elephant behavior, anatomy, physiology, and husbandry.  I also learned a great deal about some of the less glamorous training methods that are considered tradition in Eastern Asian culture.  The founder of ENP’s mission is to change these methods to more positive methods through outreach and education.  It was definitely the trip of a lifetime and I hope to be able to go back and visit ENP one day.

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Kristen Malinak; Class of 2018
Location: Ulaanbaatar & Selenge Province, Mongolia
Program: Organized via Dr. Stringer in collaboration with Duke University and the national Mongolian Veterinary School
Dates: June 12-July 8, 2016
In this abroad experience, I started by attending the OneHealth Symposium hosted by various Mongolian public health entities including the Public Health Institute and the national veterinary college in the capital. I attended with several other representatives from NC State and met tons of interesting doctors, vets, biologists, and public health officials from all over the world. Then I worked with Mongolian public health veterinarians north of the capital, in the very rural Selenge province. I learned more about performing medicine in a third world country as well as the separate public health concerns associated with a nomadic population heavily dependent on animal products. I helped vaccinate and draw samples from thousands of goats and sheep, watched an equine necropsy, and interacted with other top officials in research settings. Overall, an awesome and educational time!


Marjorie Gurganus; Class of 2019
Location: Guangzhou, China
Program: Chi Institute: Certified Veterinary Acupuncture
Dates: May 11-24, 2016
I traveled to Guangzhou, China to take a class in Canine Acupuncture at the Chi Institute.  There was a classroom portion and laboratory portion.  In the lab we had to use our anatomy and palpation skills to locate scores of acupuncture points. We got to place a few needles as well.  I also used my time there to visit the Guangzhou Zoo and Ocean World and meet with the veterinarian there.

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Molly Patton; Class of 2018
Location: Agra, India
Program: Wildlife SOS
Dates: April 18 – May 24, 2015
I spent the two weeks of Spring 2015 selectives in Agra, India gaining experience working with sloth bears and Asian elephants. While in Agra, I interned with an organization called Wildlife SOS where we worked closely with the senior veterinarian, Dr. S. Ilayaraja. Each day Dr. Ilayaraja would give a presentation on a various aspects of veterinary medicine related to sloth bears or Asian elephants in the morning and in the afternoon we would be able to gain hands-on experience working with the species he had taught us about. From learning how to use a blow dart to flushing elephants abscesses, it was an unforgettable experience that you absolutely could not have here in the United States.

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