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Colorado State University aims to fill shortage of veterinarians with $50 million in aid from state

Colorado State University aims to fill shortage of veterinarians with $50 million aid from state law
Colorado State University aims to fill shortage of veterinarians with $50 million aid from state law 02:36

There is currently a nationwide shortage of veterinarians, and Colorado State University might be one step closer to filling that void with the assistance of funding from lawmakers. 

Thanks to a bipartisan funding proposal making its way through the Colorado State Capitol, CSU could soon receive upwards of $50 million in funding to help build out its world-renowned vet teaching hospital in Fort Collins.


The project, which has already broke ground, is expected to cost more than $200 million to complete. By expanding the current teaching hospital, Sue VandeWoude, the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Dean, says CSU will be able to remain atop the most highly recognized programs in the nation.

"The reason we are here is to educate the next generation of veterinarians," VandeWoude told CBS News Colorado's Dillon Thomas. "This will allow our college to retain its position at the top of all the academic veterinary medical centers in the country."

CSU's vet teaching hospital is widely respected as one of the most prestigious programs and providers throughout both Colorado and the nation. The hospital, located in the center of Fort Collins, provides students the opportunity to gain hands-on learning, while also providing world-class care to local pets and animals.

Katie Kroeker, a second-year vet student, said she wanted to attend CSU in order to have access to that level of education.

"(CSU offers) a lot of research, a lot of great support for students, and a really compelling place to come and learn," Kroeker said.

However, both Kroeker and fellow student Hanna Kiryluk said the university has reached a point where they do need to expand the square footage of the facility and the level of care they can offer the community.

"As more research is done and as medicine advances, we need more spaces for those," Kiryluk said.

The expansion, which is expected to take more than two years to complete, will include a new livestock care facility and more.

Although both Kiryluk and Kroeker plan to graduate before the facility is completed, they said they are encouraged to know that future generations of vets will have access to modern learning opportunities.

"I am definitely excited for the future of CSU," Kroeker said.

VandeWoude said the new facility will allow CSU to accept, and later graduate, 20% more students. And in doing so, it will also allow the university to create more jobs for the surrounding community.

"I think it is a really exciting opportunity for the university and future students," Kroeker said.

"I think this facility is another step in the direction of that bridge and the intrinsic links between human and animal healthcare," Kiryluk said.

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