A couple of weeks ago (May 16-20) (5 sleeps) I had the exhilarating experience of a lifetime. I got to go to a veterinarian class in Deschapelles, Haiti.
The purpose of attending AG Horizons (The School Name)was to get educated about animals in order to be helpful in situations when animals are sick and to help educate the community around me. Many people here in Haiti don't understand illness and infections due to a lack of education and opportunity for education. Often people that live in the countryside own an animal. If a man has an anemic cow, he cannot necessarily identify why his cow is sick and he can lose his cow due to that lack of knowledge. Losing an animal causes a family financial strain and hardship. So as we are being educated we are reminded on how we can help teach people how to better care for their animals and or help them with the animal.
The whole reason as to why I got to AG Horizons Vet school is really amazing. When my Mom and Lydia and I were cutting my dog's fur (Walnut) there was a scissor accident involving his ear. It was sad and Lydia cried and worried a lot about it. Later that day Kelly, our Veterinarian friend, came and examined his cut. While she was at our house I told Kelly that I want to help animals when I am older. My Mom was also telling Kelly about my plans for after high-school. This led to Kelly telling us about AG Horizons and inviting me to come join the class. She gave me a week to decide if I wanted to try it out. My friends and family encouraged me to go and try it, so I did.
I will never regret going! My classmates and I were educated by two vets named Janice and LeeAnne. They were REALLY COOL people.
It was a fenced in property with a few buildings. I got to stay in the main guesthouse. It was green, two stories, and quite large. There were a few rooms where students could stay. I stayed down stairs in a dorm room that had about seven other guys staying there too. The dorm was pretty big and had several bunk beds. Most people had their own bunk and did not have to use the top one. There were 18 students total. There were two girls and sixteen boys. The students backgrounds varied. There were students that were illierate and students that had gone to college and could read and write in French and Kreyol. There were Pastors and Farmers and younger people too. I was the youngest one in the class.
At the school I learned a lot of intriguing things. We learned about inflamation and shock. We talked about different types of shock and how it can affect the body. We discussed a lot about internal and external parasites. We learned how to identify microscopic organisms under a microscope. They even taught us how to dose medicines for an animal depending upon their weight and the concentration of the medicine. (So, this is when I learned that math can acutally REALLY BE USED in REAL LIFE.). We learned how to tie surgical knots (praticed on towels - see photo. Because blood is very important we talked a lot about what makes up our blood too. We learned SO MUCH and went into a lot of detail on these topics.
Class was from 9:30 to 4 each day and I most enjoyed the down time afterschool when I could study everything I had learned that day and have a chance to read, color, and listen to my music. I had a few friends I talked to, we all used a mixture of English and Kreyol. I was the only student with English as my first/strongest language. It was good practice for me and I had to use my Kreyol a lot and that was great for me.
At the end of the week we had an exam. In fact, the night before the exam, a few of the students and I stayed up very late studying together with Janice the Vet Professor. For a long time we worked out equations on the chalkboard. When the test came the next day, I got 115 out of 120 points. I was SO ECSTATIC. All the students congraulated me on my good grade.
I will never forget this far-out experience I had. It was good for me to step out of my comfort zone and do something by myself (without any of my family with me). There are 10 more weeks total. I go again in mid June and will go once per month for many more months. I have a lot to learn. I plan on using the skills and knowledge I am obtaining to help animals in Haiti. Eventually, when I get older and get to a certain point in my education, I will begin working on animals under the supervison of a Veterinarian. That has me VERY psyched. Whenever it comes time for me to leave Haiti, I want to attend Vet school where I can further my education. In America, I think I would rather work with dogs and cats. Here in Haiti I will be working with pigs, sheep, horses, cows, goats, donkey, and some dogs.
That is all for now, friends. I will update you after the June class. Thanks for reading.