During her inaugural address to the campus, Dr. Watson stated that this strategy will inform the future recruitment profile of the university and ultimately determine its success. She also emphasized that achieving this vision will necessitate change, adaptability and diligence on the part of each individual member of the RUSVM community.
Watson conveyed her excitement to become dean of RUSVM and applauded the commitment and motivation of the students, encouraging them to continue to be ambassadors of RUSVM through their work, in clinics, and beyond. “There is so much pride at RUSVM and I am proud to take the next step in the development of the university as I join and lead a distinguished group of veterinary colleagues and committed staff,” Watson said.
Watson spoke of her plans to become more familiar with the culture, and her desire to meet with the faculty, staff and students of the school in an effort to gain a sense of the academic program and to better understand the operations of the campus. She was able to share some of her background as a clinician, a teacher and as a researcher, and her experience as dean of the University of Edinburgh Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Medicine, which she felt had prepared her for the task of leading RUSVM forward.
Dean Watson is known for her pro-active approach to leadership, and has already formed a clear vision of the future of RUSVM. She envisions tremendous opportunities, for veterinary medicine and plans to take steps to ensure that RUSVM is an important player in the international field. “Opportunities in the areas of global expansion, in veterinary education and research exist. It is my goal that RUSVM be known for innovations in education and be positioned to demonstrate stronger leadership within the veterinary community,” she said during her presentation.
During her address to the campus, the new dean confirmed that the health and welfare of animals will always be the central mission of veterinarians, because the care of companion animals is the mainstay of the veterinarian income and research has only reinforced the importance of the human-animal bond. In addition to this however, Watson expressed the view that veterinary medicine has scope to do so much more on a global level and is presently at the core of helping to alleviate poverty.
“Producing food for the world will become more and more challenging as the demand for protein increases,” said Watson, “throughout the practice of veterinary public health, animal disease efforts and interactions with medical teams, RUSVM can truly become a leader within the global healthcare community. Through the formation of collaborations and strategic partnerships, RUSVM and its members can truly make a difference to the world.”