The Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech will open its doors to the public during an annual Open House on March 25 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Visitors will have a chance to learn about veterinary medicine and the college through tours, demonstrations, and lectures.

The Open House will take place on the veterinary college’s Blacksburg campus, located at 245 Duck Pond Drive, and will feature guided tours of its 270,000-square-foot complex, including the Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Parking will be available in the large fenced commuter/graduate parking lot off Duck Pond Drive (known as “the Cage”). A sign will direct visitors to the parking lot entrance.

During the Open House, food trucks will offer local and regional dining options in the parking lot in front of the veterinary college. Veterinary students will also lead hour-long tours departing every five minutes beginning at 10 a.m. Tours require sign-up and are on a first-come, first-serve basis. The last tour will leave at 2 p.m.

The family-friendly event will also feature activities designed expressly for children. such as horseshoe painting, face painting, and a “future surgeon” photo booth. Third-year students will also help “surgically repair” stuffed animals that children bring to the Open House (limit one per child) during a Teddy Bear Repair Clinic, open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Lectures and information sessions will address such topics as equine gut anatomy, canine exercises, and what prospective students need to know about applying to veterinary school. Demonstrations will cover a wide range of topics and include ultrasound exams on dogs, live horses painted to represent their inside anatomy, tiny cameras called endoscopes, and more.

Attendees are encouraged to pick up a free raffle ticket as they walk into the event for a chance to win a gift card and other items. Raffle winners will be announced at 2:45 p.m. In addition, a silent auction with gift certificates and merchandise from local merchants will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with winners announced at 2:15 p.m. Auction items can be purchased by cash and check only.

For biosecurity and health safety reasons, visitors will not be permitted to bring their pets or other animals in the building or hospital areas during Open House. In the event of rain or inclement weather, outside demonstrations and activities may be canceled.

The veterinary college is hosting the Open House with support from the college’s chapter of the Student American Veterinary Medical Association, along with the majority of the college’s student organizations. The college encourages attendees to bring dog food and toy donations, which students will collect at the event for a local animal shelter. Visitors will also have a chance to meet animals available for foster or adoption.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Carling Sitterley, assistant director of admission and student services, at 540-231-7828 or during regular business hours at least three business days prior to the event.

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