STC Biology Graduate Continues Education at Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine
South Texas College alumnus Stephanie Silva has been moving steadily forward since she left STC, building on the foundation that she built here. Stephanie graduated from STC in the Fall of 2015 and then transferred to Texas A&M-Kingsville, where she majored in Animal Science. She graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from TAMU-K in the Fall of 2018. Stephanie is very appreciative to STC for the solid foundation it provided, and considers it her “home-base.” She says, “I love STC so much because it prepared me for my bachelor’s work at TAMU-K.” Stephanie describes her academic experience at STC as “rigorous.”
I love South Texas College so much because it prepared me for my bachelor's work at TAMU-K
That STC experience included participation in the STEPUP grant program. This program was administered by STC Biology Department faculty, and allowed Stephanie to do laboratory research in the lab of Dr. Carlos Avila at the Texas A&M Agrilife Research Center in Weslaco. Her project there utilized genetic barcoding to confirm the existence of a Texas population of Nesidiocoris tenuis, an insect pest from Spain that feeds on tomatoes. She believes that her experience at the research lab helped her veterinary school applications stand out and is thankful to STC for the “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity. With full support from her husband and children, Stephanie is excited to continue her education at Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine beginning in the summer of 2019. Among 1,500 applicants for a slot in that veterinary program, Stephanie was one of less than 150 that were accepted! She has worked with various animals already, both during her studies at TAMU-K and by working as a veterinary technician at multiple veterinary clinics. She does have a special interest in birds though, and intends to become a board-certified avian veterinarian. After finishing vet school, she plans to open a veterinary practice back here in the Rio Grande Valley to provide affordable care for pets of all species. As if that weren’t enough, she intends to pursue a Ph.D.! Stephanie is a great example of what STC students are capable of achieving.