Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Life of a Future Veterinarian

Name: Dajuan Hinton
From: Tuskegee, Alabama
Grade: College freshman
School: Tuskegee University
Votes: 1

Growing up I have always lived in areas where animal appreciation and well-being have
been highly undermined. I knew that I have always wanted to do
something with animals since I was little, but never had the
resources. I did not know much I could do to help out so I began to
volunteer at my local animal shelter. Not having much space, sadly,
many animals had to be put down. I know this is something that
happens everywhere, but as long as I was volunteering there I knew I
needed to make a difference. Many people buy dogs and other pets from
pet stores and other breeders before even looking at their local
shelters.

At the animal shelter it was my job to clean up after all the animal cages (cats,
dogs, rabbits, rats, etc.), walk dogs, and help visitors find a great
life companion. I have wanted to become a veterinarian since I could
remember. As part of introducing myself, I made them aware that I
wanted to be a veterinarian and they were so excited. To my disbelief
there weren’t many future vet volunteers that even came the
shelter. Once finding this out they let me go in the back to the
animal care area where volunteers were not allowed, but because I
spoke up they made an exception.

Since I knew that many people didn’t go to shelters as a first option I had to think
what I could do to change that. I would go to school really spreading
the word of how great the animals were. I am not really up on social
media so I did what I could to tell others of how they should not
underestimate a shelter, which unfortunately happens a lot. Although
I could spread the word it was still rather hard to change the
mindset of stubborn high school students and staff. Eventually they
started to see that I was not crazy when a fellow classmate of mine
actually went down to the shelter and found a dog that he and his
family all fell in love with the first day visiting the shelter. And
to this day they have their dog that they love just as much as when
they first met him.

Being able to help any animal out is what gives my life purpose. There is no better
feeling than knowing I have made a difference in the life of an
animal, as well as a person by connecting the two. Now that I am
enrolled at Tuskegee University majoring in pre-vet I know I will use
these experiences to spread the word even more, and hopefully one day
work in an animal hospital and taking care of these animals so that
it is easier for them to find a home, instead of having to be kept in
a cage for most of their lives or being put down due to lack of
space. I know I will never stop volunteering no matter what.


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