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WVU grads receive funds for continuing education in dietetics, veterinary medicine

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Three  West Virginia University graduates are taking the next step in their education with support from the WVU  Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design.

Savannah Sakosky,  human nutrition and foods graduate, along with Hailey Ternent and Angela Fagga,  animal and nutritional sciences graduates, received scholarships from the  H.E. “Doc” Kidder Memorial Trust to help fund their professional educations.

The memorial trust honors the late H.E. “Doc” Kidder, professor emeritus of animal and veterinary sciences in the Davis College, who enjoyed seeing students fulfill their potential to become veterinarians and other professionals. Sakosky, Ternent and Fagga are three of those other professionals he hoped to support even after his passing in 1989.

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Sakosky plans to pursue her Master of Science in human nutrition at West Chester University using the university’s combined masters and dietetic internship program. She’ll receive $4,000 a year for two years, which is the duration of the program. 

“I was blown away when I heard my name called as a recipient,” Sakosky said. “This scholarship means a lot because, although I didn’t personally know [Professor Kidder], the selection committee told us their personal experience with him and how passionate he was about his students. Getting a scholarship in someone’s name who made such an impact on so many students and so many people means I get to be part of that legacy.”

After Sakosky completes her master’s degree and internship, she will take the registered dietitian exam.  Her ultimate goal is to become a registered dietitian and help people who struggle with eating disorders.

Sakosky graduated from both the Davis College and the  WVU Honors College. During her time at WVU, she was involved in the  Student Association of Nutrition and Dietetics and  Delight Ministries

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Ternent will pursue a different path: a doctorate degree in animal nutrition and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University. She was awarded $3,000 a year for four years.

“Being recognized and earning a scholarship of such esteem as the Kidder Scholarship has shown me that I deserve to go to school even though I wouldn’t have been able to afford it on my own,” Ternent said. 

The average cost of veterinary school is more than $200,000 in total for the four years it takes to complete the degree. Once she completes her DVM, she plans to be a mixed animal veterinarian, which she discovered a passion for during her years in 4-H.

While here, Ternent was involved in the  Block and Bridle Club, the  Pre-Vet Club and the  WVU women’s club soccer team.

Fagga is also pursuing her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State University where she was offered a contract seat that gives her in-state tuition rates. She will receive $3,000 a year for four years from the Kidder Trust.   

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“When you’re talking in those big numbers, every little bit matters,” Fagga said. “Because of this scholarship, I won’t have to take out as many loans. I don’t know if there is a way to express how helpful it is and what a relief it is.”

As a transfer student, Fagga was concerned to come to a big university and leave the smaller WVU  Potomac State after earning her associate’s degree. However, once she met people in Davis College, she said she became much more comfortable. While here, Fagga was involved in the  WVU women’s club soccer team and the Pre-Vet Club. She also worked for the  Davis-Michael Program,  a challenging program that prepares students for continued education in medical professions and the sciences. 

After obtaining her DVM in Mississippi, her ultimate goal is to come back to West Virginia and start her own mixed practice.

“I’m extremely grateful,” she said. “It means a lot to me that the committee thought that I could make a difference in the future. Maybe they saw attributes in me similar to Professor Kidder. I don’t know, but I’m really grateful nonetheless.”

For 30 years, the trust has provided students with thousands of dollars for each year of their post-baccalaureate instruction. Kidder had a distinguished career at WVU as a researcher and educator, serving from 1954 to 1988. After his death in 1989, his will established the trust to support Davis College students in their graduate or professional education. Selection is based on academic performance with added consideration for leadership and financial need. 

The Kidder Trust is under the stewardship of the  WVU Foundation, the nonprofit corporation that solicits and administers private donations on behalf of the University. 

The Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design envisions a world sustainably fed, clothed and sheltered. To learn more about the Davis College, visit . Keep up with the latest updates and news on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube by following @WVUDavis.



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Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design