Otterbein University awarded state grant


WESTERVILLE — Otterbein University has received a Choose Ohio First (COF) grant, the university announced Tuesday.

The grant of $462,621.60 is over five years from the Ohio Department of Higher Education and the State of Ohio. This is the fourth Choose Ohio First grant Otterbein has received.

This particular grant offers scholarship support for students from Ohio majoring in equine preveterinary, veterinary technology, and allied health, the university said.

“For Otterbein’s Department of Equine Science, the COF will assist in recruiting underrepresented and low-income students to the equine pre-veterinary medicine/pre-graduate studies and equine veterinary technology majors,” Otterbein said in a news release. “Each eligible student will receive $1,500-$8,000 per year from the Choose Ohio First scholarship, with a guaranteed matching scholarship of at least $12,000 per year from Otterbein.”

“The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects careers for veterinarians and vet techs to increase at about 20% through 2031, and equine and large animal practitioners will be in particularly high demand,” said Associate Professor of Equine Science Steffanie Burk, in the release. “Otterbein’s Equine Science Department will recruit and mentor undergraduates with the goals of increasing diversity and reducing financial barriers to entering the veterinary field, while helping to alleviate the shortage of equine veterinarians and vet techs.”

“The Department of Equine Science prides itself on experiential learning opportunities and individualized attention,” said the university website. “Students are immersed in their own living laboratory and have the opportunity to expand their passion for horses into a competitive career path.​ This intensive horse-centered curriculum expands your traditional thinking of the equine industry. Explore the multifaceted, $112 billion industry and take your equine passion beyond the barn.”

Fields of study in the department consist of equine-assistedactivities and therapies; equine business management; equine preveterinary/pregraduate studies; and equine veterinary technology.

Otterbein’s Austin E. Knowlton Center for Equine Science is near the Delaware County line at 425 N. Spring Road, Westerville.

Allied health professionals use evidence-based practice for treating and preventing diseases, the university said, and the demand for health care workers is also currently high.

Otterbein also has COF scholarships available for students in computer science, engineering, mathematics, medicine, nursing, science and technology.

Otterbein’s Center for Equine Science is close to the Delaware County line.’s Center for Equine Science is close to the Delaware County line. Gary Budzak | The Gazette

By Gary Budzak

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Assistant Editor Gary Budzak covers the eastern half of Delaware County and surrounding areas. He may be reached at the above email address.

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