2023 Merck Animal Health Scholarship


Merck Animal Health is proud to show its dedication to veterinary students by providing $5,000 scholarships to second-and third-year veterinary students attending accredited veterinary schools in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean. Merck’s partnership with the AVMF over the last several years has provided scholarships for nearly 500 veterinary students, many of whom, have gone on to become young leaders in the veterinary field.

Merck Animal Health and the AVMF are dedicated to supporting exceptional veterinary students.

Merck Animal Health and the AVMF are dedicated to supporting exceptional veterinary students.

Congratulations to the 2023-2024 Merck Animal Health Scholarship Recipients!

Iowa State University

Ariel Ackerman

“I am so honored to have been awarded the AVMF/Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This scholarship will help pay for my veterinary education and allow me to continue pursuing my dream of becoming a veterinarian.”

Atlantic Veterinary College

Emma Adams

“The award will provide invaluable support with externship opportunities during my clinical year and allow me to gain practical experience so that I can become a more well-rounded veterinarian. I am excited about the prospect of being able to pay it forward in the future by providing veterinary care and education to rural communities. Once again, I extend my sincere thanks to Merck Animal Health for their generous support towards becoming a large animal practitioner.”

Colorado State University

Johnny Altwal

“In addition to being humbling acknowledgements of one’s accomplishments, scholarships alleviate an immense amount of financial stress which is so extremely helpful for a busy, tired, and stressed-out vet student.”

University of Florida

Nicole Anclade

“Scholarship means striving for success and excellence in an intellectual or social area to improve yourself and the world around you. Scholarship is something that you work towards without expecting anything in return because you are self-motivated in that area.”

Tufts University

Claire Armstrong

“This scholarship means a lot to me as I carve my path in veterinary medicine. These funds will allow me to participate in externships and explore my interests in emergency and community medicine. I will strive to honor this award through my everyday commitment to helping make the field a more diverse and inclusive community.”

Michigan State University

Yahawa Ashaqua

“I’m almost halfway through my DVM program and now I feel some renewed determination to keep pushing forward to become the great doctor that I aspire to be.  I am incredibly grateful for this scholarship as it will help alleviate some of the financial burdens of tuition and supplies. With this renewed motivation, I am committed to continuing to excel in my studies so that I can make a meaningful contribution to the veterinary field by striving to make a difference in the lives of animals and their human companions.”

University of California - Davis

Annika Bram

“I am incredibly grateful to receive this scholarship, which serves as both financial support and as recognition of my dedication to the field of equine medicine. This support will allow me to continue diversifying my knowledge and experience in the field, aligning with my aspirations of becoming a committed and competent equine practitioner. Thank you to both AVMF and Merck Animal Health; I am honored to be recognized for this scholarship alongside my esteemed colleagues.”

The Ohio State University

Christina Camson

I am incredibly honored to be an AVMF/Merck Animal Health Scholarship recipient. This scholarship allows me to focus on my pursuit of a career in comparative medicine, biomedical research, and community practice. I am so grateful for this generous support, and through this I aim to continue to create positive impact within the field of veterinary medicine.

Ross University

Grace Cooper

I am deeply grateful to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation for this amazing support which empowers me to pursue my DVM in order to improve the quality of animal lives.

University of Missouri

Davina D'Angelo

Receiving the Merck Animal Health scholarship is instrumental in furthering my efforts to improve veterinary care, particularly in the realm of advanced soft tissue. With the support of this scholarship, I intend to continue my ongoing proof-of-concept study, conducted in collaboration with soft tissue surgeons at MU, to validate the efficacy and practicality of my cystotomy spoon. This study represents a crucial step in the development and refinement of this transformative tool, which has the potential to revolutionize the cystotomy surgical procedure and improve outcomes for veterinary patients.

University of Georgia

Lauren Doster

“I am honored and humbled to be selected as a recipient of the Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This scholarship will support me through my clinical year and help alleviate some of the burden associated with veterinary school debt. This financial support also encourages me to continue my training after graduation through an internship program and pursue a career in emergency medicine.”

North Carolina State University

Madeleine Edwards

Thank you so much for this contribution to my education! The Merck Animal Health Scholarship will allow me to focus more on becoming the best equine veterinarian I can be and less on the stress of paying for it.

Ross University

Pavly Fayek

As I pursue my DVM-MSc dual degree in the Caribbean, I am dedicated to improving animal life on campus and in my island community. This scholarship allows me to dedicate more time to help farmers and pet owners in St. Kitts, that I would otherwise not be able to. I am grateful to the AVMF for their award, and will honor their investment in my education as I undertake my current and future veterinary endeavors.

Kansas State University

Jiashi Feng

This generous scholarship award will help me further my education and pursue a career in anatomic pathology and comparative medicine. Beyond that, I m also encouraged by the recognition and responsibility that it carries. This scholarship allows me to aspire to excellence and to continue working to represent our profession to the best of my ability. I am immensely grateful for this scholarship and excited to have the ability to pay the kindness forward to the next generation in the future.

Iowa State University

Elijah Fine

“This scholarship holds immense significance for me. As a veterinary student navigating financial challenges without significant external support, every opportunity for financial assistance is invaluable. Being a first-generation student adds another layer of complexity to my journey. I am deeply grateful for your belief in me and for selecting me as a scholarship recipient. I am committed to upholding the standard of excellence that drew your attention to my candidacy. I am determined to make the most of this opportunity to further my education and contribute positively to my field.”

North Carolina State University

Lakhia Fuller

With the support of this scholarship, I will be able to alleviate some of the financial burdens associated with my education. Allowing me to focus more on my studies and on gaining valuable practical experiences through externships. Being able to immerse myself fully in these opportunities without the constant worry about finances is a huge relief. As I continue on my path towards becoming a veterinarian, I am deeply grateful for the support of the the AVMF/Merck. I am excited and motivated to continue learning and growing, knowing that I have the support of such a prestigious scholarship behind me!

Texas A & M University

Janessa Garza

I am incredibly honored to have been selected for this wonderful scholarship. It means so much to me that I can use this money towards fourth year expenses and focus more on the excitement of clinics and less on the financial burden of veterinary school. Thank you!

University of Georgia

Katie Godoy

I am honored and grateful to be a recipient of the AVMF/Merck Scholarship. This award will help me alleviate some of the financial burden so I can continue focusing on my goal of becoming a successful veterinarian, as well as be a voice for my community and those in need. I am truly thankful for being chosen, this generous support for myself and other future veterinarians is invaluable. I will continue to work hard to represent Merch and AVMF for this opportunity as I continue to find my place within the veterinary industry.

Atlantic Veterinary College

Carissa Grove

“I am very grateful to have received the AVMF/ Merck Animal Health Scholarship. The veterinary medicine profession is an rewarding profession and I am very excited to be apart of it. This scholarship will help relieve some of the financial burden associated with school thus, allowing me to pursue and explore  educational opportunities, like externships, that I may not be able to afford otherwise. Hopefully one day, I can also give back to the profession by helping students being able to accomplish their goals.”

University of Tennessee

Lydia Hall

“This scholarship empowers me to pursue a diverse externship opportunity in Argentina to foster my growth and proficiency in mixed animal medicine.”

University of Arizona

Jillian Hennessey

“I am incredibly grateful and honored to be selected as a recipient of the American Veterinary Medical Foundation/ Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This award will help me significantly in my journey to becoming a boarded Emergency and Critical Care Veterinarian. As I continue on this path, I am comforted to know that organizations like AVMF/Merck support the future of veterinary medicine and I hope to one day be able to pay it forward.”



Purdue University

Jesus Hernandez Garcia

“This recognition means the world to me and will significantly alleviate my financial strain as I pursue my passion for soft tissue surgery and exotic animal medicine.  Merk and the AVMF’s support not only helps me reduce my debt but also opens doors to invaluable opportunities such as attending conferences and participating in continuing education activities. As a minority student, I find these experiences often out of reach due to financial barriers. Your generosity ensures that students like myself, regardless of socioeconomic background, have equal access to these opportunities.”




Texas Tech University

Emalee Hoffmann

“I am so honored to receive the AVMF/Merck Animal Health Veterinary Student Scholarship. Veterinary medicine is my passion and having help towards achieving this goal is amazing.  Becoming a large animal veterinarian has been my dream since I was about five years old. My mind has never swayed from this goal, and I am so lucky to be at Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine and have foundations like AVMF supporting my education. I hope one day to be able to aid students in their education, just as AVMF has supported me.”

Washington State University

Jessica Horan

“I grew up on a farm and ranch in rural Montana, and rural communities like the one I was raised in hold a very special place in my heart. I have seen firsthand the need for mixed animal and large animal veterinarians in rural areas, and I plan to help meet that need. My dream after veterinary school is to return to a rural area and practice mixed animal medicine with an emphasis on equine and bovine medicine. Ultimately, I will be able to afford to practice in a rural area due to the generous financial support of my veterinary education by scholarship donors like Merck.”

University of Georgia

Hannah Huff

“As a young Black woman, I am extremely grateful for the generous support to help me fund my veterinary education! Scholarship for me is the drive as a student and individual to increase my knowledge in the topics that are important to me. I am extremely passionate about diversifying the veterinary medicine field. This scholarship supports my desire to work with underrepresented communities so that students within those communities can learn more about the amazing field of veterinary medicine. Thank you Merck Animal Health for supporting young scholars in the veterinary medicine field.”

Texas A & M University

Taylor Irish

“I am so honored and grateful to be a recipient of the AVMF Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This award will allow me to continue pursuing a career in small animal medicine and help cover the cost of out-of-state externships during my clinical year.”

University of Saskatchewan

Paisley Johnson

“I am honoured and so grateful to have my hard work and dedication towards pursuing a career in veterinary medicine recognized by Merck Animal Health and the AVMF. During these last two years of my veterinary education, I am looking forward to advancing my clinical knowledge and skills through attending out-of-province externships in equine and mixed animal medicine. I’m thankful that Merck and AVMF have made the pursuit of these opportunities more attainable as this scholarship will help cover costs associated with attending these valuable clinical learning experiences.”

University of Minnesota

George Kaslow

“Being awarded this scholarship, I feel recognized for my efforts in balancing my commitment to serving those with limited resources and concurrent passion for pathology. It motivates me to continue expanding my reach in both sectors, and I hope it encourages others to fully explore their interests as well.”

Tufts University

Tiffany Kim

“I am so grateful that this scholarship will advance my goal of working in conservation by allowing me to gain additional training in aquatic medicine. Since entering vet med as a second career, I have been amazed at the generosity of the vets I have been fortunate enough to meet. Their willingness to support their future colleagues is inspiring, and I can’t wait to be able to do the same.”


University of Pennsylvania

Rachel Kline

I am incredibly grateful for this scholarship as it provides me with the opportunities to pursue my dream of serving the horse through the practice of high quality veterinary medicine.

Tufts University

Kirsten Krause

“As a first generation student who relied heavily on scholarships to complete my undergraduate and graduate degrees, this scholarship means to me the continued ability to pursue my interests in veterinary medicine with a lessened financial burden on myself and my family. Scholarship has been a crucial asset to my ability to progress through higher education, and something I am continually grateful for as opportunities to apply become available to me. I’m so thankful to the AVMF and Merck for their continued support of students like me!”

University of Missouri

Meghan Lawlor

“As an aspiring laboratory animal veterinarian, this scholarship will provide the means to gain the knowledge & experience for me to contribute to biomedical research, diagnosis, and treatment of debilitating conditions faced by both humans and animals alike.”

Atlantic Veterinary College

Clare Lee

“This scholarship not only provides the freedom for me to prioritize learning, it also gives me the opportunity to give back to various communities during my rotational year. Being chosen for this prestigious scholarship gave me some reassurance on my approach to my veterinary career path. I started out as a vet assistant, went through vet tech training, worked as a licensed vet tech for a few years, and finally landed on the path to my dream career. I appreciate the recognition and will use this opportunity to explore the vast field of veterinary medicine to find my place within it.”


Cornell University

Lynna Li

“I am deeply humbled and honoured to have been chosen for this scholarship. Thank you to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation for supporting my lifelong dream of becoming a veterinarian. My current goal is to become a small animal internist with a focus on translational research. This award will help me alleviate the financial burdens on myself and my family and it will help me pursue new experiences and externships. Thank you so much for choosing me and supporting my journey!”

Oregon State University

Irene Liang

“This scholarship opens up a multitude of opportunities for me that will further my experience as a future veterinarian! I am now able to go on a short-term missions trip this summer to the Honduras with the Christian Veterinary Mission–providing free spay and neuter services as well as wellness exams for horses and small ruminants in the area! I am also able to travel to California for a small animal externship while networking with veterinarians originally from my home, Hawaii. Thank you AMVF & Merck for believing in me and providing me with opportunities that I never would have without your help!”




Kansas State University

Cierra Lohr

“I am incredibly honored to be a recipient of the American Veterinary Medical Foundation/Merck Animal Health Scholarship. In addition to helping ease the financial burden that comes with veterinary school, this investment in my veterinary experience enables me to explore new opportunities and continue to strive for excellence in veterinary medicine. I am immensely thankful for the recognition, support, and opportunities this scholarship will provide.”

Cornell University

Maryna Lytvynova Mullerman

“This scholarship will not only advance my career as a small animal veterinarian but also allow me to sustain an educational project dedicated to the Spectrum of Care in veterinary medicine. I am in the process of developing a learning module for current veterinary students that would focus on clinical reasoning, access to care, and challenges of medical communication. In the future, I am looking forward to working internationally to support animal population control efforts and public health in post-Soviet countries and places affected by human conflict.”

University of Tennessee

Jordan Mackdanz

“Receiving this scholarship serves as a reminder of the importance of innovation and progress in veterinary medicine. It empowers me to pursue opportunities for growth and development, allowing me to stay at the forefront of advancements in animal healthcare. Moreover, it reinforces my belief in the transformative impact that a positive outlook can have on both animal patients and their caregivers.”




Ross University

Isabella Minacapilli

“Scholarship to me means that despite one’s personal circumstances, financial status, ethnic and social background, any educational goal is achievable if one works hard enough. Funding through programs such as the Merck Animal Health Scholarship Program makes it possible for students to worry less about barriers to their success. I am very grateful for receiving this award and I look forward to continue working on obtaining my veterinary degree.”




The Ohio State University

Kelsey Nickel

“I am honored to be a recipient of the AVMF/Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This award will reduce some of the financial pressure that comes with my final year of vet school and help me focus on my education to help best serve my future patients. I am grateful that the AVMF and Merck recognize the dedication that students show in order to provide compassionate care in the veterinary profession. This recognition graciously serves as further inspiration for the continued improvement and prosperity of the field we love. Thank you!”




The Ohio State University

Elizabeth Ohl

“This scholarship represents far more than just monetary assistance and embodies opportunity, support, and encouragement in pursuit of advanced education in veterinary medicine. I aim to complete a dual residency Ph.D program after completion of my DVM focusing on zoonotic and foreign animal disease research and prevention. This scholarship fosters my lifelong commitment to curiosity, creativity, and exploring diverse perspectives. With the support of this scholarship, I aim to seek outside opportunities to advance my skillset to better contribute to the intersection of veterinary medicine, research, and public health.”




Western University - California

Roberto Ramirez

“As a first-generation student from an immigrant family, the pursuit of higher education has been a journey filled with challenges, determination, and the unwavering support of my family. This scholarship represents far more than financial assistance; it symbolizes the realization of my dreams and the continuation of my journey towards becoming an equine veterinarian. With the knowledge and skills acquired through this scholarship, I aspire to provide quality veterinary care to underserved populations, including immigrant communities similar to my own.”

Western University - California

Katherine Ramirez Lopez

“This scholarship will allow me to partake in specialized training toward my career interest in zoological medicine and wildlife conservation. It not only provides financial support but helps open doors to invaluable opportunities such as allowing me to present my research at the annual American Association of Zoo Veterinarians Conference and partake in clinical externships at various zoos.”




North Carolina State University

Mara Ramos

“I am incredibly grateful to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation and Merck Animal Health for selecting me as a recipient of their scholarship. This scholarship greatly supports my goals by alleviating the financial burden of pursuing this professional degree. Additionally, it will enable me to continue pursuing my goal of making equine veterinary care more accessible to owners who lack the necessary economic resources. I also aspire to inspire minorities interested in becoming equine veterinarians, showing that it is achievable even for those who did not grow up around horses or come from underrepresented backgrounds.”




Texas A & M University

Danyelle Reiskind

“This scholarship has provided me the opportunity to advance my career as a future equine practitioner whose aim is to focus on racetrack/regulatory medicine by helping offset the costs of my upcoming externships at Rood and Riddle in Lexington and Saratoga, allowing me to fully immerse myself in these invaluable learning experiences.”




North Carolina State University

Aden Rouse

“I am truly honored to be a recipient of the Merck Animal Health Scholarship. This scholarship’s financial assistance will lessen the amount of loans I must secure to cover the cost of my education. As the daughter of a third generation livestock and row crop farmer, I am deeply aware of the food animal veterinarian shortage. I am eager to serve rural communities as an advocate for farmers and provide affordable veterinary care.”



Iowa State University

Kaitlyn Scheunemann

“I am so honored to be a recipient of this scholarship. As I look forward to my clinical year in just a few months, I am grateful to know that this scholarship will help alleviate some of the financial burden associated with pursuing my dream. I look forward to continuing to learn and am so thankful for the generosity of the American Veterinary Medical Foundation and Merck Animal Health for helping make it all possible!”




Iowa State University

Adri Scholten Tilstra

“I am grateful to wake up and be able to learn something new about veterinary medicine every day, and more so I am grateful that there are associations like AMVF and Merck Animal Health that support veterinary students like me. Due to this generous support, I can continue to pursue a career in Food Animal medicine in a rural community where there often is a shortage of veterinarians. This scholarship encourages and reaffirms God’s calling in my life.”

North Carolina State University

Lindsey Shapiro

“This scholarship will help alleviate the financial burden that Veterinary School entails. I feel recognized for my hard work and dedication to pursuing a graduate degree and even more passionate about my positive contributions to this profession.”




Oregon State University

Leila Shetula

“Thank you so much to the scholarship committee for granting me the Merck Animal Health Scholarship! This scholarship means I will be able to continue my veterinary education with less worry of dealing with a high student debt later on. I will be able to focus on my classes and have better peace of mind when it comes to my finances.”




Tuskegee University

Whitney Shivers

“Being awarded this scholarship will allow me to be able to explore more cultural veterinary opportunities this summer such as externships and conferences and well as help toward my NAVLE boards exams and  preparation. This scholarship will change my stress load that I endure while in school worrying about my monthly finances and any unexpected life situations that come about. I am overjoyed and appreciative of your generosity and is happy to be able to represent the 2024 Merck Animal Health Scholarship at Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine.”




Colorado State University

Cierra Smith

“I am honored to be receiving the AVMF Merck Animal Health Scholarship.  These funds help alleviate some of the financial stress associated with school so I can focus not only on helping animals, but the people involved in their lives as well. I hope to pay it forward in the future by educating the next generation of veterinarians!”

Cornell University

Anna Lia Sullivan

“This generous scholarship will help me greatly in lessening my financial burden as I progress through veterinary school and post-graduate training. With plans of continuing my educational training via a small animal rotating internship after veterinary school, these funds will help reducing the loans I take out, making this journey possible. I have greatly enjoyed my time at vet school thus far, and scholarships like yours have made opportunities, such as participating in research and extracurriculars, possible. Thank you for supporting veterinary students such as myself and making an education for us more feasible!”




Texas A & M University

Catherine Yeoman

“I am incredibly grateful to receive this scholarship! This award enables me to pursue externship opportunities with less financial burden in the fields I am passionate in, aquatic and zoo medicine. Thank you to AVMF and Merek Animal Health for believing in my career aspirations and  supporting me financially.”