At the start of 2015, recently graduated veterinarian Dr Karen Gao has become the latest post-graduate to receive a 12 month Poultry CRC Internship. “As a new graduate from The University of Sydney, I am privileged to start my veterinary career working within the Australian poultry industry” said Karen. She will be working as a veterinarian under the guidance of Dr Peter Groves of CRC industry partner Zootechny.
Karen explained how this came about, “I became greatly immersed in the realm of veterinary medicine in vet school, with particular interest in small animal medicine and surgery. My ambition changed, however, after attending Dr Groves’ lectures in the second last year of university. Here he demonstrated that veterinary medicine could be applied to, and has an important role in, an industry setting. The example given was the poultry industry”.
With Peter’s help Karen has been introduced to the Australian poultry industry, attending two poultry conferences and spending time shadowing poultry veterinarians. “These experiences enabled me to gain insights into the profession of being an industry veterinarian”, she said. “More importantly, I am grateful to be welcomed by the people I’ve met, which helped affirm my decision to enter the poultry industry. I am excited to start work and, as a newcomer to the industry, going into the field to gain hands-on experience. In light of the endless potential the poultry industry offers someone such as me, I hope to undertake further studies in areas such as poultry medicine or epidemiology in the near future.”
Karen was born in Harbin, Northeast China and relocated to Sydney at the age of 13 with her parents. Growing up a city girl, she never had much exposure to chooks and poultry farms during her life. She was, however, never far from the poultry industry, as she is the daughter of a former Chinese veterinary professor and poultry vet. “I think finding chicken post mortem photos in our family albums would be pretty self-explanatory”, she quipped.