The summer before vet school started, I decided to use some of my spare time to complete some free online federal courses in disaster management. One of my Vanderbilt professors first introduced me to FEMA courses during a project management class. Through this, I discovered FEMA's animal-related disaster courses. By the end of the summer, I earned certifications in the following:
Animals in Disaster: Awareness and Preparedness
Animals in Disasters: Community Planning
Livestock in Disasters
Technical Large Animal Emergency Response (TLAER)
In January 2014, I attended an optional student-run course on emergency response for large animals. I learned how to perform large animal rescue from barn fires, mud, overturned trailers, water, etc. I also participated in wet labs including learning how to perform drags on recumbent animals and stabilize horses with fractured limbs.