No matter what you study at Iowa State, you’ll hear about how important it is to learn by doing.

Dr. June Olds takes that to heart. She’s a primary care clinician in the Lloyd Veterinary Medical Center at Iowa State’s College of Veterinary Medicine. She is also a veterinarian at Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines, Iowa. With those responsibilities, she can offer her students a rare opportunity: the chance to work with exotic animals.

First-year veterinary students might enjoy the opportunity to shadow Dr. Olds, while fourth-year students performing clinical rotations might carry out dental procedures on a snow leopard or a llama, monitor reactions of lions to anesthesia, and listen to the heartbeat of a sea lion or a giant tortoise.

At Iowa State, we believe in the value of learning both inside and outside the classroom. That’s why we make a point of providing students with experiences that are life changing and career defining.

Fourth-year veterinary student Anne Nemeth-Wild said, “I love the variety of animal species that I get to work with. Every day is different. I’ve learned how important preventive medicine is to zoo programs.”

Some lessons you just can’t learn from a book.