Vet Students around the World - Meet Patrick from Taiwan
To start, please tell us about yourself.
Hi! My name is Kuan Yu Lin, but you can also call me Patrick. I’m a fifth year vet student in National Chia Yi University in Taiwan. Currently, I’m doing my clinical rotation in our teaching hospital. During the last years, I was a volunteer in Sri Lanka, a worker in a zoo in the Czech Republic, a trainee in Gent University, alumni of BCFN (Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition) as well as vice president and exchange officer of IVSA Taiwan. I love traveling and meeting new friends around the world.
Why did you decide to study veterinary medicine?
I love animals and challenges, and I would want to devote myself to animals for the rest of my life, so I chose to study vet medicine after high school. During the past four years so far, I’ve learned a lot and I’m expecting to use all my knowledge to help and save lives.
The big question for any vet: What's your favorite animal and why?
I love cats and dogs since I was a child, and I’m also a big fan of exotic animals, wild animals and sea animals, especially sea turtles, camels, guinea pigs, lemurs and owls. If I really have to choose my favorite animals, I think they would be camels because They have wonderful big eyes and cute smiles every time you bring apples to them. To me they are fighters; they can survive from harsh desert.
Do you have pets? Not at the moment. I was once having a cat named ‘Spongy’ and some hamsters. My mom keeps a cat and my grandparents keep a mixed dog, so I was lucky to grow up with pets. Since currently I study outside my hometown, Taipei, I can’t have pets, but I will definitely keep pets after I graduate.
Can you tell us one of your favorite "veterinary facts" or nuggets of "vet advice"? Treat animals just like people. To my mind, animals have the same right to live on earth just like we do!
What are your studies like, were they everything you expected them to be?
No, I didn’t expect it to be like this. I hoped for more practical work. Therefore, I think it would be great if we could enrich our regular studies with some more practical experience. While studying, I am joining and holding a lot of activities. Sometimes, I have to shorten my sleeping time, but I enjoy being busy and challenging myself a lot! During the past four years, I joined IVSA, which is like a big family for me. I was elected as Vice President of our local chapter IVSA Taiwan. At that time it wasn’t very well-known compared to now; we will keep on making more people and vet students aware of IVSA. After a year as vice president, I got elected as exchange officer. I helped organizing social events such as the 64th IVSA Symposium in Taiwan which took place earlier this year. I managed several group and individual exchanges. So as you can see, there is a lot going on in my studies!
Did you ever have experiences with dangerous or toxic animals?
So far, the closest one was working with zoo animals in Czech Republic two years ago. They have impressive animals, such as cheetahs, emus and owls…. I learned how to make proper diets for animals and feed them without getting myself hurt. It was an exciting and amazing experience!
What advice do you have for new vet students? / What advice would you give people considering becoming a vet?
I have several: Never seize to dream big and make your dream come true. Trust your instinct when it comes to animals. Don’t be afraid of challenges or failures. If you are interested in becoming a vet, you should try to involve yourself in vet’s working environment, so that you can experience yourself instead of only picturing it.
Any plans for the future?
Always! I am currently enjoying working with small animals, however, by having all these experiences by now, I am thinking about joining a big pharmacological company such as Bayer or an international animal diet company, but I am not a 100 percent sure yet. For my life plans, I think I will keep on exploring the world, trying things that I haven’t done yet. I've learned basic German, and I will go on with it! “Tschüss”!
Thanks for the interview.
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