Category: Tales from the Barn

The Final Stretch

Posted by Madison Simmons in Tales from the Barn. No Comments

18th April

Countdowns are well on their way as the end of the semester is quickly approaching! There’s great anticipation, tension and horror for the arrival of graduation. We have worked so hard to finally reach this point in our lives and with that comes pride, satisfaction and joy. However, fear, uncertainty and anxiety follow very close behind the joy of graduation. For the past 17 years we have been told what to do, where to be and when, which classes to take and more. We have come to know the routine of classes starting in late August, having a week off of school every other month, and three months of no school for the summer. (Put this on repeat until graduation!) Now, the reality of not having to attend classes, not having that set routine and not being surrounded by the same … Read More »

Doing What You Love

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14th February

The best feeling comes when your academic focus is also your passion! I am fortunate to have had so many great learning experiences and internships as a student at the University of Findlay.

From the moment I arrived at the farm, I never thought I would love it this much or be where I am today. Working at the sheep farm during the summer of 2015 was the best thing ever! Now, I bring the lessons and experience I acquired there over the past two summers back to UF and learn even more.

This is my final semester at UF, and I am excited to be taking Sheep Production and Management with Dr. McCarthy. He loves his sheep and is most enthusiastic when teaching students about his passion. Similar to Beef Production and Management class last semester, this class assigns a pregnant ewe to each student. After the ewes … Read More »

A Productive Semester!

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13th December

Calves were moooving in from left and right this fall semester at UF’s Beckett Center. Let’s see, there was Buckeye, Bertha, Wilbur and an original 36D along with a few other stragglers. Our Beef Management and Production Lab takes a unique approach with students here by giving first-hand experience through the Cow-Calf Project.

Allie and her calf Wilbur with mother Rosie

The Beef Management and Production class is one of the most exciting classes to take as an upperclassman at Findlay. Everyone looks forward to the lab section and participating in the Cow-Calf Project. This is a capstone project that takes the whole semester to complete.

Within the first week of classes, each student claims a cow that is said to be pregnant. During this time, they monitor nutrition, and record body condition scores and vaccinations given to the mother during her pregnancy.

Next, comes the … Read More »

Over the River, Through the Woods…

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11th November

Over the river and through the woods to biology (my new second major) I go. This semester, as part of my biology major, I have decided to give ecology a try. Ecology is definitely a different kind of science course, and labs are exciting as we head out to the Rieck Center or stroll around campus and take a hike for class. Our first lab was spent learning how to use a GPS unit to find various waypoints spread across campus. One of our waypoints led us right to the fountain.

For several weeks, our small groups measured, identified and inventoried all the trees on campus for a grand total of 1,100 trees. Can you believe there are 1,100 trees on campus? And most of them are Bradford Pear Trees.

I remember my mom giving me a tree and insect identification book for when we … Read More »

Here it Goes

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18th October


Nervous smiles as we put the final touches on our applications.

The time quickly came and went as September 15 approached. Vet school applications are sent in, and all we can do now is sit and wait to hear back about interviews.

Top 8 things that happen when applying for vet school:

Second guess yourself — Do I really want to do this for the rest of my life? Am I willing to dedicate all this time and money to the career and schooling?

Procrastination — Let me be honest, we all said we would start the applications over the summer and have them completed by the start of classes, but that does not happen. Sitting down late at night trying to finish bits and pieces of vet school applications while completing my classwork can be stressful. Critical components of this process include writing a personal statement, answering supplemental application questions and … Read More »

Tour de Farms

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26th September

Last weekend, my roommate and I took on the weather and went to tour Hancock County’s finest farms as part of the Hancock Farm Tours. Hancock County Farm Tours consist of a “drive yourself tour of eight local farms,” which takes place every four years. I was thrilled to find out that the tours were being held during my last year here in Findlay, and that I could get a better appreciation for the farming community of Ohio. Each of the eight farms featured a different agricultural business and even featured the University of Findlay. The University of Findlay was featured as stop number one (C. Richard Beckett Animal Science Center) and stop four (Rieck Center for Habitat Studies). Both of these locations were, and still are, a part of my learning and better understanding of animal science, biology and agriculture.

Personally, … Read More »

The Time Has Come

Posted by Madison Simmons in Tales from the Barn. No Comments

28th April

Saying this semester and year was rough is probably an understatement. Junior year is definitely the hardest year as a Pre-Veterinary student at the University of Findlay. Ask anyone on campus, myself included, I’m sure they will say summer can’t come fast enough so they can catch up on sleep, not have to go to classes or study. However, this summer may not be as relaxing as past summers have been. As May 13th and September 15th approach, junior pre-veterinary students start applying to veterinary schools and taking the GRE exam.

After all these years of attending school and wanting to become a veterinarian, there is only one thing that stands between us and our dreams — getting accepted. There are currently a total of thirty veterinary schools in the United States. I have narrowed my list of schools to apply to down to five, … Read More »

Oh, the places they grow…

Posted by Madison Simmons in Tales from the Barn. No Comments

21st March

Here are the results of what we grew from swabbing an ear.

By far my most favorite class this semester is microbiology! It’s a lump sum of biology, biochemistry, genetics and probably a little more as it can feel like review most of the time. However, lab is definitely the best part. In lab we learn about microbial growth as each week contains a different test that we will execute by growing various kinds of bacteria on certain growth plates.

Our creativity was set loose as we were asked to swab either our skin, nose, mouth or any other surface that we wanted to see what kind of bacteria grew on it. We swabbed our various surfaces and then smeared the bacteria onto agar plates so that we could grow our sampled bacteria. Agar plates are used to grow all … Read More »

Sap Happy

Posted by Madison Simmons in Tales from the Barn. No Comments

16th March

We just finished Spring Break and it couldn’t have come at a better time! Classes have been in full swing and studying around the clock can add up to exhaustion and burn out rather quickly. I know I and many others appreciated this past week as we were able to put the books down for a little bit and switch up the pace. Many people go to Florida or someplace warm to get away to, but I found the comfort of my own hometown a great get away.

A hike in the mountains, all you can eat pancakes at the historic Maple Tree Inn, spending time with family, adventures, and even some fun in the barn all made the week fly by way too fast.

Every year my family tries to take a trip to Cartwright’s Maple Tree Inn which is … Read More »

“Cat-astrophe” Averted – Internship Tales

Posted by Madison Simmons in Tales from the Barn. No Comments

16th February

Special measures and cat taming skills are used to safely restrain the cat so that Dr. Kerns can safely examine it.

The sound of clanging, banging and crashing emitted from the back room as Dr. Kerns and one of the TAs were in the room trying to get a cat ready for a declaw and neuter. Everyone else was in the other room busy at work and stopped at the sound of all the ruckus. One of the cats had gotten loose and had climbed up onto the shelf and was making it an interesting challenge to catch him.

Shortly after it was another cat’s turn and getting him out of the carrier was definitely easier said than done. Welding gloves and a towel were used to keep the assistants safe and the cat safe as they tried to wrap … Read More »

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