Innovative Dual Degree Integrates Veterinary Medicine, Environmental Studies

Yvette Bordeaux pic

The School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) have launched a new Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (VMD) - Master of Environmental Studies (MES) dual-degree program. This option is designed to prepare multi-disciplinary veterinarians to assume leadership roles within the environmental and public health sectors.

The new VMD-MES program reflects the growing recognition of the inextricable link between wildlife, food animal habitats, and the environment. Contextual environmental factors are often a significant, contributing factor in animal-to-human disease transmission. Toxic minerals, chemicals, soil destruction, and climate change can negatively impact landscapes and animal populations. The VMD-MES option provides veterinary students with a deeper understanding of the environmental context of animal population health.

MES program director Yvette Bordeaux notes the dual-degree program is the natural next step in the evolution of the OneHealth perspective at Penn. “We are the last piece of that puzzle. Penn Vet and Medicine have been working together for a while. Now we are bringing in the environmental piece. I’m very excited about the program, and students are, too.”

The VMD-MES joins a number of other unique dual-degree options at Penn Vet that integrate veterinary medicine with other scientific and professional disciplines, including a new VMD-Master of Social Work (MSW), also launching this year.  Jennifer Punt, VMD, PhD, Associate Dean of One Health at Penn Vet, notes, “Veterinarians have always played important roles in public health, human health, and welfare. Current events have only underscored the importance of our profession in interprofessional efforts to tackle these complex health challenges. Our new dual degrees join the visionary VMD-PhD, VMD-MPH, and VMD-MBA programs, and they reflect the novel need for veterinarians to engage in interdisciplinary problem solving at the critical juncture of human health, environmental health, and animal health and welfare. Our first cohort of students in these programs are already transforming expectations for the future; we couldn’t be more excited for them and with them.”

Arts & Sciences News

Laura J. Alber, C'90, and Ned Klingelhofer Endow Professorship

The gift creates the Alber-Klingelhofer Presidential Professorship.

View Article >
Roberto Gonzales Appointed Penn Integrates Knowledge University Professor

Gonzales will hold joint appointments in the Department of Sociology and in the Graduate School of Education.

View Article >
Joseph Subotnik Named American Physical Society Fellow

Joseph Subotnik, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor of Chemistry, has been named a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS).

View Article >
Eleni Katifori Awarded an American Physical Society Early Career Award

The Katifori group's research seeks to uncover the physical principles behind the function and development of complex biological flow systems.

View Article >
Gabriel Raeburn Receives Dissertation Grant

The Ph.D. candidate was awarded funds by the National Institute of Social Sciences.

View Article >
Marsha Lester Named Browne Professor

Marsha I. Lester has been appointed the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Chemistry.

View Article >