Think Wild Veterinary Partnerships

Think Wild partners with local veterinarians, veterinary clinics, and veterinary teaching programs to increase wildlife veterinary science and teaching throughout Central Oregon.

Think Wild has partnered with Central Oregon Community College’s Veterinary Technician program since 2022 to provide wildlife veterinary professional development and hands-on experience to students.

Think Wild partners with the Central Oregon Community College to offer veterinary technician students hands-on experience and learning in wildlife medicine and rehabilitation. 

Think Wild hosts:

  • Five 3-week-long, full time externships for veterinary students,
  • Onsite workshops,
  • Lectures at COCC and online webinars,
  • and samples and data collection for parasitology anaylsis.

The COCC Veterinary Technician program is a two year program, and through this partnership, students have access to unique, hands-on wildlife rehabilitation and veterinary science opportunities. At the same time, students help Think Wild provide top quality care to patients and expand wildlife veterinary knowledge and practice in the Central Oregon region.  

What Does a Veterinary Externship at Think Wild Involve?

Think Wild offers externships to COCC vet tech students with three week, full time rotations at the wildlife veterinary hospital. Students get hands-on experience for rehabilitation and vet tech skills, including anesthesia, IV and catheter placement, blood and fecal analysis, and more. They also participate in an avian radiography workshop hosted by Think Wild’s wildlife veterinarian, Dr. Laura Acevedo, DVM, and director of wildlife rehabilitation, Pauline Hice. 

Along with these externships, Think Wild hosts a series of hospital training sessions for new volunteers every Spring. The training subjects are as follows:

  • General Training
  • Rescue and Transport 
  • Wildlife Hotline 101
  • Orphaned Wildlife Care
  • Safe Wildlife Handling


Think Wild is very grateful to COCC and Beth Palmer, MEd., CVT, the director of the Veterinary Technician Program at Central Oregon Community College. 

This partnership not only provides incredible learning opportunities for COCC students, but it also gives Think Wild access to veterinary tools and resources through COCC that may not have been accessible before. As such a successful partnership, Think Wild and COCC hope to continue to work together well into the future.