Skip to the content

Kansas State University


The official newsletter of the College of Veterinary Medicine

Lifelines logo

March 2012 - Vol. 7, No. 3

Top Stories

Dr. Sara MarkFellow makes her Mark

Dr. Sara Mark shares her passion for animal-assisted therapy and volunteer work.
See her share her story.

Phi Zeta Research Day

The CVM spotlight shines on research on the welfare and diseases of animals.
Who was the guest speaker?

Dr. Carpenter in Peru

Dr. James Carpenter helps organize zoological medicine conference in South America.
What was the focus of the conference?

BCI offers online youth animal care training

Fourth-year students help at Wichita's EquiFest

CVM honors Dr. Norman Meriweather at WVC

Kansas State wants your feedback


Regular features

Wrenn PachecoUnder the Microscope
Wrenn Pacheco, Events Coordinator Assistant, Continuing Education

Check it Out at the Library
Book sale provides equipment

News Ticker

Calendar of events

New Arrivals/Recent Departures

Lifelines back issues

Hard copy version of Lifelines (printable)
Note: File is in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format.
Some documents are in PDF format.
Click here to get Acrobat Reader

Support the College of Veterinary Medicine
Click the link to make a gift at our online giving page.

Facebook logoFind us on Facebook

Video Feature

2012 Alumni Fellow makes her Mark

Experiences learned through Animal Assisted Therapy

  Dr. Sara Mark
  Alumni Fellow Dr. Sara Mark talks to students about her experience as a volunteer in the Pet Prescription Program at Children's Hospital Colorado.  
  Dr. Mark and Bridgette Sharpe  
  Dr. Mark answers a question from first-year student Bridgette Sharpe during a lunch with members of the student veterinary clubs.  

Dr. Sara Mark, Littleton, Colo., is the 2012 Alumni Fellow for the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Mark was on campus Feb. 22 and 23 for a variety of activities, tours and seminars. On Feb. 23, she presented a seminar to the college titled “Dr. Sara Mark: Experiences with Animal Assisted Therapy and Lessons Learned.” In the evening, a reception was held for the Alumni Fellows at the Alumni Center at 6:30 p.m. During the banquet, the K-State Alumni Fellows program, sponsored by the Dean’s Council, the President’s Office and the Alumni Association presented the Alumni Fellows awards to Dr. Mark and the recipients from the other eight academic colleges, graduate school and division of continuing education.

Dr. Mark earned her bachelor’s degree in life science and physical science in 1977 and her DVM in 1983, both from K-State. After graduation, she worked at the Wingate Veterinary Hospital in Englewood, Colo., for two years. Then Dr. Mark worked at the Alpine Animal Hospital Southwest in Littleton for three years. She then went to work at the Southwest Veterinary Hospital in Littleton, where she has become the owner of the practice.

On top of her busy veterinary practice, Dr. Mark dedicates a great deal of her time and expertise as a volunteer at the Prescription Pet Program in the Children’s Hospital Colorado in Denver. This program consists of dog-assisted therapy and pet visitations with patients, which was the result of collaboration between Children’s Colorado and the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society. In 1998, she shared one of her profound experiences with the Prescription Pet Program in a story she wrote, entitled “Darlene,” which was published in the book “Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul.” Dr. Mark conducts pet screening for the program, and she wrote a protocol that can be used by other hospitals seeking to use pet-visitations. She has worked with the Lutheran Medical Center, Porter Hospital and Littleton Hospital to help each develop and implement its own pet visitation program.

See the interview in the video below:

Video produced by Joseph Chapes and Kent Nelson, technology coordinators from
Computing and Technical Support (CATS).



Phi Zeta day celebrates research accomplishments

The annual Phi Zeta Day was held March 6. It featured various posters and presentations and concluded with an awards ceremony that recognized research and scholarship accomplishments. Phi Zeta also initiated new members during the ceremony.

Raghu Amachawadi and Jingqun Ma.
Raghu Amachawadi listens as Jingqun Ma, right, explains her research poster.

Dr. Kevin Stafford
Dr. Kevin Stafford, professor of veterinary ethology at Massey University in Palmerston North, New Zealand, gives the guest lecture for Phi Zeta Research Day. He has worked with production animal veterinary practice in several different countries.

Dr. Sara Fritz
Dr. Sara Fritz recounts a monitoring method used to reduce workplace contamination.


Clement Neely
Graduate student Clement Neely talks about a pain measurement study in cattle.

Drs. Blecha, Chang and Thomson
Dr. Kyeong-Ok Chang, associate professor, receives the 2012 Pfizer Award for Research Excellence, flanked by Drs. Frank Blecha and Dan Thomson. The award is presented to individuals who have performed superbly in research and scholarly activities at the CVM.

Jamila McKenzie and Dr. Bruce Schultz
Second-year student Jamila McKenzie responds to a question about her poster from Dr. Bruce Schultz.




Dr. Carpenter helps organize conference in Peru

  Dr. James Carpenter works on a bird of prey.  

Dr. James Carpenter instructs a Latin American veterinary student about radiographic techniques used with birds of prey.


Warmly referred to as “The Three Amigos” by the Latin American veterinarians, Drs. James Carpenter, Roberto Aguilar and Kay Backues traveled to Lima, Peru, last November for the International Conference on Zoological Medicine. Dr. Carpenter, professor in zoological medicine, Dr. Aguilar, Cape Wildlife Center veterinarian, Barnstable, Mass., and Dr. Backues, Tulsa Zoo veterinarian, were invited by Fauna Vet-Peru to help organize and put on the conference.

During the conference, Dr. Carpenter gave six presentations on the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of a wide variety of captive and wild animals. In addition the team organized and presented 11 hours of wet labs on radiographic and ultrasound techniques in birds and reptiles.

Drs. Carpenter, Aguilar and Backues have previously organized similar conferences. In 2006, they were invited to Guadalajara, Mexico. After the successful completion of the conference, they were soon receiving invites to organize other conferences, such as: Colombia (2007), Argentina (2008), Chili (2010) and Peru (2011).

“The opportunity to train Latin American veterinarians and veterinary students was incredible,” Dr. Carpenter said. “At the conference in Peru, there were 125 registrants from nine different countries. In addition to building friendships and strengthening the field of zoological medicine, the Three Amigos also get to experience the culture of other countries. A priceless opportunity.”

Dr. Carpenter and alpacas
Dr. Carpenter gets introduced to some of the locals while in Peru.



BCI offers online youth animal care training

  Youth showing cattle  

“The goal of the program is to utilize modern technology to reach youth and provide educational videos for those involved or interested in learning more about beef and dairy cattle and equine to improve animal welfare, food safety and environmental stewardship,” said Abby Jones executive director of the Beef Cattle Institute.


The Beef Cattle Institute (BCI) at Kansas State University has launched a Youth Animal Care Training program. The program features free online educational training modules for youth through high school age. Through participation in the training, youth can improve their knowledge of animal handling, animal welfare, antimicrobial residue avoidance and food safety. After a training package is completed, a certificate is available for printing. Through the support of BCI sponsors, the training packages, certification and electronic record of training are offered at no cost to youth.

“Training youth is essential for the future of the agriculture industry,” said Dr. Dan Thomson, assistant dean for outreach. “It can ensure worker safety, employee retention and production of wholesome products. We are proud to provide these tools through the generous support of our BCI sponsors.”

Youth can work through the multimedia training modules at any time. Once all the modules within a package are completed and the quizzes are passed with 80 percent accuracy or higher, a certificate is available. There is no time limit or deadline to complete the modules and quizzes.




Centennial Plaza bricks ad



Fourth-year students help at Wichita's EquiFest

Tiffany Lee and Theresa Lamontagne
Fourth-year students Tiffany Lee and Theresa Lamontagne traveled with Dr. Chris Blevins to EquiFest 2012 held in Wichita on Feb. 9-12. Dr. Blevins and the students checked the health of the horses and handled equine emergencies at the event. About 150 horses attended EquiFest including Clydesdale horses and miniature horses.



CVM gives posthumous award to Dr. Norman Meriweather

Dr. Norman MeriweatherThe late Dr. Norman Meriweather, Miller, S.D., is 2012 recipient of the Alumni Recognition Award at the Western Veterinary Conference in Las Vegas on Feb. 20.

In 1943, Dr. Meriweather earned his bachelor’s degree in geology from K-State. After graduation, he went on to serve in the U.S. Army during World War II from 1943 to 1946. Dr. Meriweather was discharged from the military as a captain. He worked as a game warden in South Dakota for four years. In 1950, Dr. Meriweather returned to K-State to attend veterinary college and earned his DVM in 1955. After graduation, he was a business partner with his brother Dr. Herb Meriweather of Meriweather Vet Supply in Miller from 1955 to 1978.

“This award helps keep alive the memory of a special alumnus,” said Dean Richardson. “His career reflects a lifelong dedication to both animal health and agriculture. We are honored to recognize and remember Dr. Norman Meriweather for his achievements. His positive impact has been felt throughout South Dakota and will continue to live on through future generations”

“Our dad, ‘Dr. Norm’ cried the day he got the call to say he was receiving this award,” said his daughter, Marcia Potts. “He told me it was an honor to get this but probably didn’t deserve it as he was just doing his job. Dad loved his profession and respected every farmer/rancher he serviced. He has done great things for not only his profession, but for his community, family and friends. Dad was always proud to be a K-State alumni, loved his Wildcats and reunions with his K-State classmates were always a highlight that he looked forward to.”

Dr. Meriweather retired in 1983. He had many leadership responsibilities throughout his career. Dr. Meriweather served as the president of Meriweather Vet Supply for more than 15 years, president of the South Dakota Veterinary Association in 1969, South Dakota State University Agriculture Advisory Committee president in 1970 and received the Veterinarian of the Year award in 1983.

Dr. Meriweather passed away on June 17, 2011. He is survived by his wife Margueritte “Margo” of 68 years, and their three daughters: Connie, Helen Kay and Marcia; and seven grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.




Kansas State wants your feedback

Kansas State University is seeking feedback from the public on the university's programs and quality as part of the reaccreditation process.

Kansas State is seeking continued reaccreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association for an additional 10 years. To date, more than 100 people at the university have produced a Self-Study, which is a critical self-analysis of K-State's activities over the past 10 years. This report will be submitted to the commission and an evaluation team will visit campus April 9-11.

Prior to visit, the commission is soliciting feedback from the public on the quality of the university and its programs. Go to to submit your comments.

Kansas State University has been accredited by the HLC since 1916.

For more information on Kansas State's HLC process, go to




Get Connected ad




Under the Microscope

Wrenn Pacheco, Events Coordinator Assistant, Continuing Education


Wrenn Pacheco Hometown: Henderson, Texas

Family information: Have been married to my best friend for almost five years now with no kiddos yet!

Pets: We have four dogs: one old, sweet black lab, Max, and three working border collies: Poncho, Spook and Chico. We also have a litter of 11 border collie puppies!

What is a favorite memory you have of your pets?  There is not one single memory that sticks out, but I guess what makes me smile the most is when our pups get so excited to go for a ride and our black lab hangs his head out the side of the truck and the wind makes his ears and jaws flap. This makes him one happy dog!

What is your favorite spring time activity? I enjoy gardening and tagging baby calves with my husband.

What are your spring break plans? Headed to Texas to see my mom and sister!

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I don’t really remember…I changed my mind about once a week. I did know whatever it was I wanted it to be something I was so passionate about I would work very hard at to succeed.

What is your favorite color to wear? Black, because you can accessories with any color. It is really all about the accessories you know!




Check it Out at the Library

Book sale provides equipment

by Carol Elmore

Carol Elmore Once again we have had a very successful book sale at the Veterinary Medical Library. Thanks go to all the people who donated books, all the folks who purchased books, and all the library staff who worked hard to make this sale a success. Jeff Gauss, Scott Jackson, Mary Girard, and our student employees contributed time and expertise to make the sale a successful and profitable event for us.

It is always fun to see the excitement on people’s faces when they locate a bargain or find a special book. I heard lots of students say that they really liked the old veterinary books that are often hard to find. We had shoppers who came back multiple times just to see if the prices had been reduced. We made a total of $1,719 on our book sales which included the always popular silent auction. This was $400 more than we realized on our previous book sale.

I’d like to remind everyone that we don’t keep the profits from the sale but reinvest the amount in technology items. Many of you have requested that we purchase another professional quality camera. We plan to get a Canon T3 (1100D) which will be very similar to our other professional camera, the Nikon D3100. Both of these cameras have a very fast shutter speed of 1/4000 and have a resolution of 1280 x 720 for movie recording. This means most videos can be recorded with an appropriate memory card. The capabilities of these two cameras are much better than any of the point and shoot cameras that we have to loan. One of the features of both cameras is that the camera can be plugged into a high-definition television (HDTV) and the movies and pictures that were recorded can be viewed on the HDTV’s large screen.

The new Canon T3 will cost about $1,200 so in addition to it we plan to purchase a set of high powered binoculars. This should enable a person to view close-ups on any football or baseball field. If you are planning a cruise to Alaska or are going on some other fabulous vacation, consider borrowing our new binoculars to view the spectacular scenery up-close. Then with one of our professional cameras, you’ll be able to re-experience your trip by viewing the still shots and video that you took on the trip.

Remember if you need help, the Veterinary Medical Library staff will answer your questions about the library and related areas such as print graphics, medical illustrations, technology items, or software. We’re here for you so feel free to e-mail us at, stop by the library, or call us at 532-6006.


Please visit the Veterinary Medical Library Web site: for help on this and other subjects.


News Ticker

The VMTH hosted an Equine Section Open House on Feb. 25. There were presentations given by VMTH faculty members. Dr. Chris Blevins had a session on geriatric horse dentistry and Dr. Maria Ferrer hosted a section on pregnant mare issues. Tours of the equine facilities were also offered to visitors.

Ultrasound demo

Dr. Ferrer

Time for grub.

Dr. Ferrer meets a group outside.

Dr. Blevins

Drs. Meena Kumari and Antje Anji were invited to attend the Humboldt Kolleg on "Collaboration and Networks" in Arlington, Virginia. The Kolleg was sponsored in part by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The focus of the Kolleg was to assemble global leaders from academia, government, and the private sector to exchange ideas, present findings, provide networking opportunities, and create a framework in which to analyze the emerging trends in collaboration and networks impacting present and future research in different countries.


Bailey Starns, DM/P Grant Specialist, and her husband, Taylor, welcome new daughter Ellie Jo Starns. Ellie was born on Feb. 22 and weighed 7 lbs, 15 oz and measured 20.5 inches.




Calendar of events

General events

April 6: 12th Annual Kind Hearts, Caring Hands Day

Schedule of Events

7:30 – 9:00 am: Free all-college continental breakfast (Mara Conference Center, 4th Floor Trotter Hall)
8:00 – 9:00 am: CVM tours (start at elevator lobby, 4th Floor Trotter Hall)
8:30 – 10:00 am: Quiz Bowl - Trotter 201
10:00 – 10:50 am: Classroom Lectures & Lab Demonstrations for classes '13, '14 and '15 ( Frick Auditorium in Mosier Hall)
11:00 am: Dr. Tom Lenz, Senior Director, Equine Technical Services, Pfizer Animal Health (Frick Auditorium, Mosier Hall) “Animal Welfare Challenges, Lessons Learned”
2:00 pm - White Coat Ceremony - K-State Union Ballrooms
6:30 pm – Senior Honors Banquet – K-State Union Ballrooms (reservations required)

April 21: Kansas State University Open House

May 11: Commencement, McCain Auditorium


Continuing Education events

Apr. 29: Frank W. Jordan Seminar*

June 4-6: 74th Annual Conference for Veterinarians

* More information about Veterinary Medical Continuing Education events can be found at the VMCE Web site.


A&P Seminar Series

Seminars start at 3:30P.M. in the Mara Conference Center, 4th Floor, Trotter Hall

March 12: Daniel Hirai, Kansas State University

March 26: Nanhua Chen, Kansas State University

April 02: Dr. Eileen Hasser, Missouri State University

April 09: Dr. Annelise Nguyen, Kansas State University

April 16: Sheng Yi, Kansas State University

April 30: Naomi Ohta, Kansas State University



New Arrivals/Recent Departures

Welcome to:

Dr. Pavan Rajanahalli Krishnamurthy, Post Doctoral Fellow - A&P

Thanks and Goodbye to:

Dr. Samira Najm, Post Doctoral Fellow - DM/P
Marion Schweitzer, Senior Administrative Assistant - A&P


Lifelines is published each month by the Development and Alumni Affairs Office at the College of Veterinary Medicine.
The editors are Joe Montgomery,, and Dana Avery,