Faculty coordinator named for SDSU's veterinary medicine program

South Dakota State University Extension
Farm Forum

BROOKINGS, S.D. — Jessie Juarez recently joined South Dakota State University’s new Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine as the faculty coordinator. Juarez comes to SDSU from Iowa State University, where she was a clinical assistant professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine.

“I am excited for the opportunity to be a part of the development of a new professional veterinary program,” Juarez said. “I look forward to educating future veterinarians that will make significant contributions at a local and national level to veterinary medicine and public health.”

At Iowa State, Juarez taught a wide variety of courses in the veterinary school’s professional curriculum and was coordinator for the Clinical Skills Laboratory. She also previously taught in the department of animal science at Iowa State.

Juarez completed her bachelor’s, master’s and DVM degrees from Iowa State. Following graduation, she worked as an associate in a food animal veterinary practice in Waupun, Wis., where she focused on embryo transfer, herd health, ultrasound and surgery.

In her new role, she will be heavily involved with the admissions process, as well as teaching students and coordinating faculty for the new program.

“We are very excited to have Dr. Juarez on the leadership team of our new Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine,” said Gary Gackstetter, director of the program. “She brings a wealth of teaching and clinical experience, as well as energy and innovative solutions to our program.”

The first cohort of students selected for the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine will begin classes on the SDSU campus in fall 2021. The new program is made possible through a formal cooperative agreement, in which SDSU students admitted into the professional program complete the first two years of their veterinary medical education at South Dakota State University and then transfer to the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine for the final two years of study. The collaborative program will meet all accreditation requirements of the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education for the UMN CVM accredited program.

While at SDSU, students will have a rigorous, yet enriched learning experience because class sizes are intended to be small. The small class size was designed to provide the opportunity for students to have supportive learning communities and more hands-on practical experience working with food and companion animals, as well as making it possible to work closely in a world-class diagnostic facility with dedicated faculty and scientific researchers.

For more information about the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine, visit

Jessie Juarez recently joined South Dakota State University’s new Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine as the faculty coordinator.