Veterinary Students Receive National DHIA Scholarships

Recipients were awarded $1,500 scholarships.
Recipients were awarded $1,500 scholarships.
(File Photo)

The National Dairy Herd Information Association (DHIA) Scholarship Committee selected two veterinary medicine students – Marina Sweet, The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and Kathryn Osborne, Michigan State University (MSU) College of Veterinary Medicine – as recipients of $1,500 scholarships. Selection committee members evaluated applicants on overall interest as a veterinarian planning to work in dairy, involvement in dairy medicine and extra-curricular activities, and interest in using dairy software and dairy records to aid in dairy management and in improving animal health. To be eligible for a National DHIA veterinary student scholarship, applicants must be third- or fourth-year veterinary medicine students and enrolled at a college that is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education.

Sweet developed an interest in food animal medicine after moving from Detroit to Ohio. She joined 4-H and started with a flock of Buff Orpintgon hens. Her poultry project led to her raising goats, sheep, swine and dairy cattle. Sweet earned a bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University. As extra-curricular activities, she focused on Buckeye Dairy Club, serving as recording secretary, first vice president and president, and the North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge. Additionally, she is a member of the Food Animal Medicine Student Symposium Planning Committee, which is charged with organizing Dairy Challenge Vet.

To enhance her livestock experiences, Sweet shadowed mixed animal veterinarians and interned on dairy and beef cattle operations, which included a Wisconsin calf ranch where she conducted a nutrition research project and shared results through a university undergraduate research forum. She worked at the Sexing Technologies dairy heifer facility in South Charleston, Ohio, and interned at the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service Fort Keogh Livestock and Range Research Laboratory in Miles City, Mont., where she focused on cattle reproductive physiology.

Osborne, whose scholarship was sponsored by the National DHIA Joe Drexler Scholarship Fund, graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in biology, with chemistry and Spanish minors from Wake Forest University. Raised in central Pennsylvania, Osborne and her mother operated a 100-head Registered Holstein dairy farm. Her father’s veterinary practice focuses on dairy cattle. As an FFA member, Osborne carried out a research project where she looked at the epidemiology and prevention strategies of mastitis in her family’s milking herd, as well as other dairies in her area, using DHI data.

A Miracle of Life student volunteer at the Upper Peninsula State Fair, Osborne assisted with calving, lambing and farrowing, educated fairgoers about animal gestation and parturition, fed, watered and cleaned cattle, and helped maintain the educational display. Her work experience includes MSU Veterinary Medical Center (VMC) large animal student assistant, Millerstown Veterinary Associates laboratory technician and veterinary assistant, MSUVMC emergency radiology technician, Ard-Vista Animal Hospital veterinary assistant, Shalom Project Spanish interpreter and Oceans Research intern in Mossel Bay, South Africa.
Money generated from the annual National DHIA Scholarship Auction primarily funds the organization’s veterinary student scholarship program. Investments and donations also help build the fund. To donate to the fund, contact Leslie Thoman at 608-848-6455 ext. 108 or

National DHIA, a trade association for the dairy records industry, serves the best interests of its members and the dairy industry by maintaining the integrity of dairy records and advancing dairy information systems.



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