The Illinois Farm Bureau continues to support veterinarians’ education especially vets who focus on caring for food animals. The IFB has selected Brandi Welch, a third year student at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine. Welch will receive the IVET loan at the full amount of $40,000 with a $1, 500 stipend to help pay expenses associated with clinical rotations.
Welch says that she is excited to have this opportunity to continue to offer education and meds to the clients and patients she serves. Welch, who grew up in Mercer County, says that being an IVET loan recipient is an excellent opportunity for veterinary students to borrow money at a low interest rate while also upholding a commitment to Illinois farmers by practicing large animal medicine upon graduation.
Welch says she became interested in animal health while learning to care for her own horses and hopes to become a mixed-breed animal veterinarian and return to her hometown to eventually own a practice.
The IVET program provides up to $40,000 to as many as three veterinary students each year to help offset the cost of education. Loans are provided for a period of two to three years and students in their fourth year in school are eligible for a $1,500 stipend. Loans are repaid over 5 years after graduation during which graduates must commit to working in a food animal practice that services Illinois livestock producers.
The Illinois Farm Bureau established the IVET program in 2005. Since then more than $440,000 has been distributed to 27 veterinary students who focus on caring for food animals in Illinois.