MU CVM Alumna Returns
as Student Services Coordinator
Dr. Angela Tennison’s ready smile and relaxed manner belie her former career. “I was one of those crazy people holding two phones and yelling into them,” she jokes of her days as an energy futures trader.
Tennison, a native of Kentucky, had always wanted to be a veterinarian, but allowed herself to be talked out of pursuing her ambition. After graduating from Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss., with a degree in business administration, she found herself in St. Louis where she worked for Cargill and Merrill Lynch for seven years in the fast-paced financial markets.
However, her desire to become a veterinarian refused to remain just a dream. She applied and was admitted to the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine. At MU, she was a member of Phi Zeta and distinguished herself as the recipient of the Feline Practitioners Award and the Mary T. Wernert Memorial Scholarship.
She received her doctor of veterinary medicine in 2001 and returned to St. Louis, where she worked in the Animal Emergency Clinic. After a couple of years in emergency medicine, she accepted a position with the Bridgeton Animal Hospital, working side-by-side with fellow CVM alumni, owners Kay and Pierre Tung. Last fall, her husband’s position as the human resources director for Independent Stave Company prompted the pair to relocate to Columbia with their young daughter.
Tennison said her varied experiences will help guide her in her new position at her alma mater in the recently created position of student services coordinator. Her responsibilities focus on the preceptorships students undertake as part of their professional training. Tennison will create and maintain a database of preceptorship opportunities that give MU CVM students hands-on experience in veterinary practices, animal-related industries and working with government agencies. She will gather information from students about their preceptorship experiences to help match their fellow students with the best future opportunities for their skill sets, and she will also collect information from the companies and agencies offering the experiences to determine how well the CVM is training its students for their eventual entry into the veterinary profession.
“This is my dream job,” she said. “It combines business with veterinary medicine and I have the chance to work with the students.”
As a student at MU CVM, Tennison undertook three preceptorships: one at a cat clinic in Philadelphia, one in Stone Mountain, Ga., and one in St. Louis. She said the position of a student services coordinator would have been helpful to her had it been in place when she was a veterinary student.
And while she isn’t practicing veterinary medicine in her new job, taking care of her three cats and two dogs still allows plenty of time interacting with animals. In her free moments, she also enjoys running, reading and spending time with her family.
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