Sumter livestock producers invest in new veterinarians

By Peter Kent

Image depicts girl with her horse.As animal health issues change the need expands for veterinarians who know how to face new challenges to public health and the livestock industry. These include international agricultural emergencies, such as avian influenza, as well as improving livestock genetics and reproduction rates.

To ensure South Carolina has enough veterinarians, livestock producers in Sumter County have created a scholarship fund for students study veterinary medicine. The scholarships are for students who attend Southeastern vet schools with the expectation that they will stay in the region. Named for a highly respected Sumter veterinarian, the Dr. Robert Beaty-DVM Memorial Scholarship has been awarded to eight students to date.

Howard van Dijk, Clemson Extension animal scientist, works with producers to select scholarship candidates. Dr. Brandon Brunson, a diagnostic pathologist with Clemson’s Veterinary Diagnostic Center in Columbia, was the first scholarship holder. The most recent recipient is Kristin Carter, a Clemson graduate in animal and veterinary science who now studies veterinary medicine at the University of Tennessee. 

For information: Howard van Dijk, 803-865-1216, ext. 128,