Long Island University announced today a $2 million gift from the 2007 Forbes Entrepreneur of the Year Clint Severson and Conni Ahart for the new College of Veterinary Medicine, opening fall 2020. The donation will establish the Veterinary Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Management Center, located within the College of Veterinary Medicine. The College of Veterinary Medicine will be one of only four veterinary programs in the Northeast, joining the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University and Tufts University.
“Conni and I are dedicated to the expansion of higher veterinary learning and medical advancement in the veterinary field,” said Clint Severson. “The Veterinary Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Management Center will enable LIU’s College of Veterinary Medicine faculty to create new paths and fresh solutions in veterinary education, and provide students with real-world experience along with traditional classroom training.”
As members of the Council of Advisors for the new College of Veterinary Medicine, Clint Severson and Conni Ahart are noted philanthropists dedicated to animals, and the entrepreneurship training that is much needed in veterinary medicine. Mr. Severson was the chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Northern California-based Abaxis, a cutting edge medical devices company that enables physicians and veterinarians to respond to the health needs of their clients at the point-of-care.
The Veterinary Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Management Center will focus on Entrepreneurship and Management, supporting LIU Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students who are interested in veterinary concept/product development and clinic management. The Center will engage students across multiple disciplines including management and business, and offer students Veterinary Entrepreneurship and Management scholarships and fellowships.
“Clint Severson and Conni Ahart’s partnership with LIU’s College of Veterinary Medicine exemplifies their deep commitment toward pioneering research and animal care,” said Dr. Kimberly R. Cline, president of Long Island University. “We are grateful for their generous gift that will give LIU the resources to be at the forefront of veterinary education.”
The College has secured partnerships with more than 50 affiliates, including primary care and specialty clinics, zoos, research laboratories and shelters, where students will gain real world experience in surgery, diagnostic support, intensive care and other areas critical for successful veterinary practice. At full enrollment, the veterinary school will serve 400 students, with 100 in each graduating class.
“Mr. Severson and Ms. Ahart’s support of LIU’s College of Veterinary Medicine will allow students the opportunity to develop entrepreneurial initiatives designed to move concepts from theory to practice, as well as create partnerships with industry and venture capitalists,” stated Dr. Randy Burd, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo awarded LIU $12 million as part of New York State’s investment in transformational local health care initiatives, helping to establish Long Island as a biotechnology research corridor.
“Clint Severson and Conni Ahart’s gift allows us the opportunity to expand on our commitment to prepare a globally competent, practice-ready, entrepreneurial veterinary workforce capable of addressing current and future needs of animal health,” added Dr. Carmen Fuentealba, Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine. “Learning financial aspects connected to veterinary training is critical. LIU College of Veterinary Medicine students will correspondingly receive training in financial management and business practice in the curriculum, and through mentoring via the new center.”
For more information, visit www.liu.edu/vetmed.
—Submitted By LIU College of Veterinary Medicine