Biology and health science major Lara Ellentuck ’22 has been an animal lover from a very young age. “Growing up, I always had at least two pets by my side,” she told us. “This led me to discover a deep connection and motivation toward helping all animal species.”
It seemed only natural that she would come to launch the Pre-Veterinary Club at Pace, an organization dedicated to promoting veterinary medicine and creating a space where students can share their love of animals. “[We] provide members with opportunities in the veterinary medical profession,” she went on to explain. Most recently, they rolled out all new ways to get involved like discussions, workshops, trivia, and more.
Lara’s definitely qualified for this work, too. She’s interned at a local animal hospital as a veterinary assistant, an experience that left a profound effect on her. “[It] allowed me to get a glimpse of my future career,” she explained. “One day, I hope to teach students as my mentors taught me—with an open heart and an open mind to learning respect for every animal.” She’s looking forward to gaining even more clinical experience by volunteering and interning at local animal shelters and hospitals as well, even if COVID-19 put a brief hold on her plans.
“Since the pandemic started at the end of my sophomore year, all of my internship plans fell through,” Lara said. But she’s keeping her options open. “Currently, I am still searching for opportunities to gain experience with animals.” We know that she’ll land exactly what she wants!
In the meantime, Lara is working in the Pace mailroom as an assistant. Before that, she was a research assistant for the College of Health Professions—all big jobs when you’re also juggling classes and assignments, not to mention running a brand new student organization. It’s a lot of work for one person, but Lara is nothing if not incredibly driven and positive when it comes to what she wants.
After completing her undergraduate degree next year, Lara told us she plans on taking a gap year before heading off to attain the veterinary school requirement of 500 hours. “I am a big believer that everything happens for a reason,” she told us. “I hope that this gap year will allow me to work in the veterinary industry and grow to love my passion even more.”
We’re excited to follow Lara’s career and work in advocating for animal welfare! Be sure to check out all the latest events and opportunities from the Pre-Veterinary Club this month. All majors are welcome—the only requirement is that you have a love and respect for animals. The team is also on Instagram, Facebook, SetterSync, and their very own website. Give them a follow!