Three Mount Ida College Veterinary Science Technology students spent one month in South Africa to learn about wildlife conservation and the crucial role veterinary medical staff plays in the country’s growing wildlife industry. The trip marked an experience of a lifetime for veterinary technology students Lindsay Dustin ‘14, Therese Pymento ‘15 and Sasha Morency ’14, who were able to take their longstanding passion for wildlife conservation abroad this June to Moholoholo Rehabilitation Center in Hoedspruit, South Africa, where they each had the opportunity to care for exotic wildlife including leopards, giraffes, honey badgers, and antelopes while exploring South Africa’s vibrant culture.

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“I have had an extreme passion for these animals my entire life and by having this experience, I have already been given the chance to understand what it takes to work with them,” noted Pymento.

The trip to South Africa provided an opportunity for the students to gain the hands-on, career-focused clinical training required by the Mount Ida Veterinary Technology program in a unique setting. Dustin and Pymento elected to complete one of their required clinical rotation internships at the rehabilitation center, combining studying abroad through Mount Ida’s Center for Global Connections with gaining valuable professional experience through caring for exotic wildlife. Morency, a graduate student, spent her time in South Africa conducting research on local animal species while volunteering at Moholoholo.

At the rehab center, students became a pivotal part of the day-to-day activities and the care and treatment of wildlife. Their duties were wide-ranging, consisting of feeding and cleaning; playing with animals to provide stimulation and exercise; helping to transport sick or injured animals; releasing healthy animals back to the wild; and even hand-raising baby animals.

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Though Moholoholo’s ultimate goal is releasing animals back into the wild once their health is restored, staff at the rehab center sometimes encounter wildlife that are too sick to survive on their own. As a result, the rehab center houses a number of ‘permanent residents’ that become ambassadors for their species to visitors. Members of the public enjoy up close and personal experiences with resident animals while the Moholoholo staff provides information about each species and the threats facing wildlife.

One of the leading veterinary technology programs in New England, Mount Ida’s Veterinary Technology program provided the perfect foundation for the student’s work at Moholoholo:

“This trip increased my interest in environmental conservation and reinforced my passion to educate the public about wild animals and their habitats,” said Morency. “I learned that rehabilitation of wild animals is important, but the education that the clinic provides the public is vital to the conservation of the South African habitat as a whole.”

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During their spare time, the intrepid students made the most of the natural splendor around them taking a safari tour of Kruger National Park and camping outside underneath the vast, stunning African night sky.

“One of my favorite things that we did was a sleep out, camped in the middle of the African bush,” said Dustin while noting the high possibility of wildlife encounters near their camp during the night.

The experience left a memorable impression on each student, encouraging them to continue to seek out new global experiences.

“This experience has motivated me to continue my travels around the world to further enhance my knowledge about environmental conversation,” concluded Morency.

To learn more about your study abroad options at Mount Ida, please visit the Center for Global Connections. For more information about Mount Ida’s Veterinary Technology Program, visit our undergraduate majors page.

Mount Ida College’s Office of Residence Life is introducing a new Living Learning Community called CONNECT for first-year students in selected majors.

CONNECT combines all the necessary ingredients to enable our first year students to transition smoothly into college life in an engaging and supportive living environment. Students majoring in American Studies; Criminal Justice; English; Liberal Studies; Media Communication; Political Science and History; Psychology and Sport Management are automatically enrolled in CONNECT.

Comprising of approximately 55 students, CONNECT will provide a built-in support system that includes peer tutors, success coaches and specially selected resident assistants that will ensure you have the resources and guidance  you need.

“CONNECT Living Learning Communities allow students with similar academic interests to take classes together, including First Year Seminar and Introduction to Psychology, and live on the same floor in our residence hall,” says Jen Golojuch, Mount Ida’s Assistant Dean for Campus Living.

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“They also help to provide students with skills relevant to their fields, in addition to special program and activity offerings,” Golojuch said.

With a brand new, renovated location in Wingate Hall, complete with a lounge area and study spaces, our students living in CONNECT will have convenient access to academic and peer support when they need it.

“CONNECT is a very exciting opportunity for our students in these majors and we are thrilled to be able to offer this pilot program this fall with the hopes of expanding it in the future,” noted Golojuch.

For more information on CONNECT and additional Living Learning Communities provided on campus including Women in Science Experience, Design and LAMBDA, please visit our Residence Life webpage.

Mount Ida College welcomed 30 rising high school juniors and seniors to campus July 13-July 18 for a weeklong immersion into college-level design studies. Students lived on campus to get a taste of college life while they explored personalized design interests and developed skills under the tutelage of expert Mount Ida School of Design faculty.

“We were thrilled to welcome and host his group of talented and energetic students during  Mount Ida’s first ever Design Week” says Jason Donati, Dean of Mount Ida’s School of Design. “It is a profound experience to engage at the High School level with expert designers and other students who introduce diverse perspectives and new ways of thinking and practicing.”

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Throughout the week, students took full advantage of both our campus studio facilities and nearby Boston, well-known for its world-class art. Each day, design faculty would host engaging and informative lectures, in addition to a series of hands-on, career-focused design workshops. Students selected workshops from the following design fields: game art and digital visualization, fashion design, fashion merchandising and marketing, graphic design, interior design, or commercial photography. In the evenings, they enjoyed a guided tour of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, dinner at famed Italian restaurant Maggiano’s and a performance of the Broadway production “Shear Madness.”

With full access to Mount Ida’s design studios and state of-the-art technologies, students created their own design portfolios from concept to completion.  Frances Metzger, a rising senior at Cherokee High School in Marlton, NJ noted that the week was the “perfect balance of having fun and developing valuable design skills.” It was also an opportunity to connect with likeminded peers who share an interest in design and to create portfolio for a future career or college applications.

“I got started on a strong portfolio for applying to college while at Design Week,” said Emma Pereira, a rising senior at Mount Saint Charles Academy in Woonsocket, RI. “I created a full fashion merchandising business plan and had access to expert instructors to guide me along the way. This experience will give me a leg up when I apply to college this year.”

Mount Ida College offers leading undergraduate design programs in animation, game art, digital visualization, fashion design, fashion merchandising and marketing, graphic design, interior design, and commercial photography. To learn more, please visit our undergraduate majors page.