Mattison Palmer, a Veterinary Assistant major from Mehlville, was recently recognized as one of December’s recipients of the “Do the Right Thing” award. This prestigious honor is bestowed upon young people in the St. Louis region who are nominated due to their exemplary behavior and actions. Bi-State regional police departments sponsor the award and collaborate to realize a mission of promoting positive choices by our youth. Captain Melissa Webb presented the award to Palmer at a ceremony last month.
Donna Hobbs, Veterinary Assistant instructor, nominated Palmer due to the outstanding care she shows for animals and her fellow students. “Matti is an excellent student. She goes above and beyond what is asked in the classroom in caring for the animals…(and) is always willing to help other students as well,” she said.
Palmer, now a senior, has been working part-time for the program as a caregiver 3 evenings a week. South Tech’s program works with local area animal rescues and always has foster animals on campus. Palmer provides their evening meals, water, and exercise. Hobbs said, “This requires a lot of responsibility as students have to care for the animals in the evening on their own.” Additionally, Palmer works part-time for Noah’s Ark as a Veterinary Assistant. Although she will not be officially certified until testing at the end of this year, Palmer is able to perform many tasks at the office including assisting with prescriptions, blood draws, x-rays, restraint, and other office related duties.
“This program has taught me to feel more confident,” said Palmer regarding her knowledge of animals’ needs and what actions she can take to help them. The work of recuperating animals who have been neglected, abused, or are otherwise in need has been a very rewarding experience for Palmer. She has been involved in animal rescue work since she was young and knows that animal care will remain a constant pursuit, but she is still determining if she will commit to a career pathway in veterinary service. She currently plans to begin her studies at Meramec while exploring her options.
“Her dedication, compassion, and care that she has given to foster and rescue animals are why I nominated her,” said Hobbs. She noted that Palmer has skipped social events to care for animals being fostered by the program. This is a great example of how Palmer consistently strives to do the right thing and proves her worthiness of this recognition.
Students interested in all veterinary pathways are encouraged to consider applying for the Veterinary Assistant program. Applications can be found here: http://southtechnical.org/application/.