Cornell University: Veterinary class gets creative for zoonotic disease communication

To become a veterinarian, students must not only acquire an immense body of knowledge on complex systems and subjects, but also be able to communicate that knowledge — a task easier said than done. This spring, College of Veterinary Medicine students honed such skills by creating materials that communicated about certain zoonotic diseases, thanks to the course “Veterinary Practice: Public Health.”

“Veterinarians prevent or treat zoonotic diseases every day,” says course instructor Casey Cazer, D.V.M. ’16, Ph.D. ’20, assistant professor in the Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences. “When a veterinarian recommends putting a dog on parasite prevention, or vaccinating cattle against brucellosis, they are preventing a zoonotic disease. Therefore, it is essential that they can explain to animal owners why it is important to pay attention to zoonotic diseases.”

Students were more than up for the task, demonstrating their talents for graphic design, communication and in creativity. In pairs, the students took on projects that capitalized on a variety of mediums, from posters to podcasts.