2022 Student Scholarship Winner: Hannah Nelson

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Published on: December 6, 2022

I will be forever grateful to the AETA for providing scholarship opportunities to students to attend the AETA/CETA annual convention. I was overwhelmed by the generosity and inclusiveness all of the AETA members expressed toward me as a veterinary student, from their willingness to explain and discuss protocols with me to their advice and invitations for preceptorships. I have never felt so welcomed by such an accomplished group of professionals.

I really enjoyed learning more about small ruminant advanced reproduction techniques during the preconference seminars. This is an area of the industry to which I have not yet had much exposure, but it has sparked a career interest for me.

The student and tech lunch talk by Dr. Tyler Dohlman and Marianna Jahnke was a great way to learn some tricks of the trade and provide a good overview of the embryo transfer industry. We were also appreciative of the mentor lunch! It was a great way to start relationships and conversations about the industry, get advice from seasoned veterinarians, and meet other students.

Earlier this year, while at a clinic for a short externship, I had the opportunity to learn more about genomic selection and the use of beef semen in dairy cows to help improve the productivity and profitability of the herd. I was excited to hear talks about Slaughterhouse Beef Embryo Production by Dr. Brady Hicks, and Beef Embryos on Dairy by Dr. Clint Walhof. I appreciated the discussion on pregnancy rates and the comparisons between the use of Angus embryos and AI. I look forward to working with clients in the future utilizing both techniques to maximize their productivity and profitability in their own herds. I am grateful to be involved in an industry that looks to increase sustainability through these advanced techniques.

The practitioner panel on embryo collections, beef donors, and ET in general dairy practice with Drs. Kirk Gray, Scott Larsen, and Kent Bindl was eye-opening. Hearing a diverse group of practitioners discuss their focus in the ET industry was a great way to broaden our understanding of the industry as a whole and the different career paths within it.

I would like to thank the AETA, its board, members, and sponsors for putting on such a great event. The networking and connections made through this conference will be of great benefit to me as I start my career in the veterinary and embryo transfer industries. I look forward to watching the growth in technology and advancements in ET and IVF, and I am excited to be involved in such a progressive industry!

Hannah Nelson

Iowa State University

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