Furry Friends get Vaccinated Thanks to Engaging Akins ECHS Student Program

Humans are not the only ones getting their vaccinations. Eighty-five furry four-legged friends received their routine vaccines thanks to the Akins Early College High School veterinary clinic on Tuesday, April 13.

Students took advantage of hands-on experiences offered through the district’s Career and Technical Education program during the community pet vaccination clinic.

Juan Rojas, a senior at Akins and a veterinary medical application student, values the opportunity he gets to take education outside of textbooks and into practice. The class provides students a significant advantage after graduation––whether going straight to college or deciding to join the workforce.

“It’s been a great experience. It’s better than sitting in a classroom hearing a lecture from a teacher,” he said. “I get to be in a clinic for most of the day, helping with animals and seeing how a real veterinarian works. It cemented my future in veterinary medicine.”

Hands-on learning opportunities happen on campus every day, and more activities will take place during the last six weeks of school. Teachers are eager to welcome their students back to campus.

The Akins veterinary clinic is an on-campus teaching facility focused on student learning through hands-on experience. Students are high school seniors working toward becoming state-certified veterinary assistants.

The student-run clinic administered dog and cat vaccines for DHLP, parvo, rabies, bordetella, PRCC and feline leukemia. All clinic services are supervised by the instructor and industry professionals.

Veterinary medical application is one of 106 courses offered through the Career and Technical Education program in Austin ISD. CTE courses provide students with the academic knowledge and technical skills they need to gain entry to high-skill, high-wage and high-demand industries.

For other seniors like Tina Pham, the veterinary program has defined the career she wanted to pursue after graduation.

“Being in this program has really helped me grow as a person,” she said. “Before I came to Akins, I was unsure of what I wanted to be when I grew up, but after joining the program and finding my love for animals, I want to become a veterinarian.”

Through her dedication, Pham earned a full-paid scholarship to attend The University of Texas at Austin in the fall.