Major: Allied Health–Science & Professional Preparation Track / Minor: Biology
As an administrative assistant at Northwest Airlines, CheTarra Jenkins worried about animals traveling in the cargo section of planes. Her concerns led her to create a series of recommendations to improve airline policies and enhance communications to pet owners to ensure they comply with safe and healthy storage for their pets.
“I have always loved animals, and as a child I wanted to be a veterinarian. I pursued a different career path, but now I am studying at Towson and working toward my dream of being a vet,” she says.
Before entering Towson University’s allied health program, Jenkins volunteered at BARCS, the Baltimore Humane Society, worked for two Baltimore-area animal hospitals, and graduated from the Veterinary Technician Program at Community College of Baltimore County.
“Towson has what I need to be successful, and one of my professors at Towson really helped me develop a road map,” explains Jenkins. “Her support made me comfortable working with other professors. I was completely changed by my experience in that course.”
Jenkins continues to work at local animal hospitals, deepening her understanding of animal care and solidifying her passion. Towson University’s allied health program made the connections for Jenkins between human health care and animal health care. “To love animals to the degree I do, you have to understand human nature and accept the good with the bad in people.” She has embraced the OneHealth Concept, which combines environmental health, animal health and human health.
“Access to quality health care is critical for all of us. Many families cannot afford care for their animals, and ideally you want the family unit, including pets, to be healthy together,” explains Jenkins, who is now considering a dual degree with a master’s in public health as well as a doctorate in veterinary medicine.
“My top priority is educating people about animal health and well being. I am very passionate about it, and earning a master’s in public health will give me a great foundation.”