Nicholas Shen Awarded AABP Foundation Bovine Veterinary Student Recognition Award
Nicholas Shen, a fourth-year veterinary medicine student at Lincoln Memorial University-College of Veterinary Medicine (LMU-CVM), was awarded the 2019 AABP Foundation Bovine Veterinary Student Recognition Award sponsored by Merck Animal Health, including a $5,000 scholarship. Shen was presented the award at the 52nd Annual Conference of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) Sept. 12-14, 2019 in St. Louis, Missouri. Shen will graduate with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree from LMU-CVM on May 16, 2020.
“Nick is a stellar student, citizen, and future practitioner. He is a leader, a passionate advocate for animal agriculture, and I look forward to seeing how he positively impacts the veterinary profession,” said LMU-CVM Vice President and Dean Jason Johnson.
Shen’s passion for agricultural work began as a child in Rochester, Minnesota, working with his grandfather planting an array of vegetables in their two-acre yard and learning how to cultivate fresh produce for his family and neighbors.
“My grandfather was the youngest of seven children growing up on a wheat farm in China,” Shen said. “When the Sino-Japanese war broke out during the Second World War and his family farm had been overrun by Japanese soldiers, he joined the Chinese Air Force which allowed him to come to the United States to train with American Air Force pilots. The Air Force allowed opportunities that would eventually lead my family to the United States.”
Shen’s grandfather died just after he turned 8 years old. Having a keen interest in agriculture, but not having any formal training, Shen gravitated to classmates who were involved with 4-H and the agricultural industry. After high school he moved to Arizona and decided to study animal science at the University of Arizona where he joined the Collegiate Livestock Growers Association and volunteered frequently at the university’s teaching farm.
“With my father being a cardiologist, there was always consideration to pursue human medicine as my profession,” said Shen. “However, with my agricultural interests and medicine background, I was certain that a career in food animal veterinary medicine would be the right decision for me.”
Shen is now a student at LMU-CVM pursuing his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree and is only a few months away from graduation. Throughout his four years at LMU-CVM he has focused on furthering his experience working with cattle. He has served as the Food Animal Club Bovine Wet Lab Coordinator and arranged several labs that included embryo transfer, fetal sexing pregnant tracts, artificial insemination certification courses, bovine surgical procedures, hoof trimming, and more. He created an event called Palpation Fridays coordinated with a local dairy farm to offer students pregnancy testing experience with cattle. Outside of club activities during veterinary school he has completed an externship at Overton Veterinary Services, a mixed animal practice in Nebraska, and at TK Veterinary Services, an exclusive bovine practice in North Dakota. He has also spent many afternoons volunteering at Hickory Corner Dairy helping milk, vaccinate, sort, treat, dehorn, and trim hooves.
“I love everything about the beef industry- from the cow-calf operation, to the stocker/backgrounder, and through the feedlot,” said Shen.
Shen’s immediate goal following graduation is to become a bovine practitioner and be a valuable contributor to a practice.
“I hope to become a practice owner and create a successful practice with a culture that values hard work, going the extra mile for clients, integrity, excellence in everything we do, teamwork, and humility; operating with the purpose to impact people’s lives through the lives of healthy and happy animals,” said Shen.
Long term his desire is to contribute to cattle health and the food supply at an international level and be of value to people and leaders in the field such as in the organizations of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners and the Academy of Veterinary Consultants.
Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) is a values-based learning community dedicated to providing educational experiences in the liberal arts and professional studies. The LMU-College of Veterinary Medicine is located on LMU’s main campus in Harrogate, Tennessee, with additional academic facilities in nearby Lee County, Virginia. LMU-CVM is an integral part of the University’s medical programs and provides real-world, community-based education in a collaborative learning environment. For more information about LMU-CVM, call 1.800.325.0900, ext. 7150 or visit us online at vetmed.LMUnet.edu.