2016, Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology
Argosy University, Twin Cities
Ward Technician at University of Minnesota Veterinary Medical Center
“The teachers at Argosy University have a special place in my heart. Each one gave me different inspirations to be the tech that I am today. Hearing their stories and experiences inspired me that I too will have those stories and some new ones of my own.”
Transitioned Easily from High School to College, Now Cares for Animal Patients Before and After Surgery
Coming from a small high school, Brandon Hoskins was thankful for Argosy University’s small size and friendly community. “The staff and faculty were very supportive from the first day I visited to review my program,” he said. “The instructors were top notch in their teaching and when it came to questions and advice.”
Hoskins added that the transition from high school directly to college was easy, but he needed to learn to be independent and responsible. “In high school, the teachers and your parents hold you accountable for your learning and grades,” he stated. “In college, you are responsible for yourself. The teachers still hold you accountable but they don’t alert your parents if you aren’t completing your assignments or keeping your grades up.”
Hoskins recommended that current students build a network of student friends to study with—and ask for help when needed. “Stay on top of your work and ask your professors for clarification of processes you may be struggling with,” he added. “Meet with your advisor often to stay on track. They will help you to understand what you need to do with your schedules and when to take the appropriate classes. And use your time wisely—you’ll have more free time than in high school—don’t waste it.”
To prepare for his career, Hoskins participated in wildlife avian internship at the Minnesota Wildlife Rehabilitation Center while attending college part time. “I did that for about three months, learning husbandry of many wild bird species and how to take care of them,” he said. “In 2016, he began an Internship at Clinic of Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) on Sanibel Island, Florida. I learned many ways to take care of many different species of birds, mammals and reptiles.” His internship complete, Hoskins accepted a temporary ward technician position at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Medical Center. He was hired on full time three months later.
He cares for patients before and after surgeries and looks after medical boarding patients. “I administer medication, water and feed the patients,” he said. “Cleaning cages in the wards is also a very important duty as a ward tech. When there is extra time, I help in the emergency room, intensive care unit and treatment room.”
One of his proudest moments was working with the offspring of a “celebrity” Bald Eagle named Ozzie. “The eaglet had a lot of news coverage,” he stated. “Being a part of the little eagle’s life was an amazing experience. Watching him grow from the updates of the hospital’s Facebook page was a treat as well.”
Hoskins did face the emotional challenge of euthanizing animals during his internship. “I had to put down many wild animals at CROW, which was something to get used to,” he said. “The University of Minnesota Veterinary Medical Center runs differently than a wildlife rehab center. Dealing with the grief of the different clients and the ways they portray their feelings and emotions, that never gets easier.”
Despite the difficult days, Hoskins is thankful to work in a profession where he’s constantly learning and teaching others. “Knowing that I make a difference by sharing what I know can save many animals in the future, and making a mark on this earth is what I am all about,” he stated.
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