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Academic Health Center Oral History Project

About the College of Veterinary Medicine

Veterinary medicine courses have been taught at the University of Minnesota since 1888. In 1947, the Minnesota legislature authorized the establishment of a School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Minnesota, which was administered as a unit of the Institute of Agriculture. In 1957, the Board of Regents established the College of Veterinary Medicine as a separate administrative unit. In 1968, the College established the Department of University Veterinary Hospitals. In 1985, the College of Veterinary Medicine was formally incorporated into the Academic Health Center.

Please click here for a timeline of the College of Veterinary medicine.

Anderson, Robert K.

RK Anderson.jpg In 1956, Robert K. Anderson came to the University of Minnesota with a joint appointment as a faculty member in the School of Veterinary Medicine and the School of Public Health. He served as the Associate Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine from 1965 to 1971. With Ruth Foster, he invented the Gentle LeaderĀ® Headcollar in 1982. In his dual roles in veterinary medicine and public health, Anderson co-founded and served as director of CENSHARE, the Center to Study Human-Animal Relationships and Environments, one of the first centers to train and promote companion animal therapy. He retired in 1985. He died October 12, 2012.

Jessen, Carl

Carl Jessen completed a pre-vet program at the University of Minnesota and earned his D.V.M. in 1956. After spending some time in private practice, he decided to pursue his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. Jessen completed his Ph.D. in qualitative genetics and radiology in 1969 and took a position at the College of Veterinary Medicine in the Department of Surgery and Radiology. In the late 1970s, Jessen became Associate Dean of Planning and Vet Services, a position he held for twenty years, and served as director of the hospital for twelve years. He continues to be a member of the faculty.

Osborne, Carl A.

Carl Osborne.jpgDr. Carl Osborne served as a professor at University of Minnesota in the College of Veterinary Medicine beginning in 1964. He simultaneously pursued a doctorate, researching the urinary tract, and completed his degree in 1970. Dr. Osborne held a joint appointment with the Department of Pediatrics in the 1970s, working with the pediatric nephrology division. During his time at the University, Dr. Osborne has held several leadership positions, including Chair of Small Animal Clinical Sciences Department from 1976 to 1984 and Chair of the Companion Animals Department. He began the Minnesota Urolith Center in 1984, which continues to research the prevention of and cures for diseases of the urinary system in companion animals. Dr. Osborne has also earned many teaching and research awards over the course of his career, including the Distinguished Teacher Award, and continues to serve on the University's faculty.

Perman, Victor

Dr. Victor Perman earned his bachelor's degree in 1953, his D.V.M. in 1955, and his Ph.D. in 1962, all from the University of Minnesota. Over the course of his career, he made significant contributions to veterinary clinical pathology, particularly through his work on hematology and cytology, and won several teaching awards. Dr. Perman also wore several administrative hats at the University, including chair of Clinical Pathology (1983-1989), associate dean for research and graduate studies (1992-1997), and director of the Veterinary Hospital Laboratories. Dr. Perman retired from the University in 2001.

Weber, Alvin F.

AlWeber.jpg Dr. Alvin F. Weber became a faculty member at the University of Minnesota College of Medicine in 1949. He served as head of the Department of Veterinary Anatomy between 1965 and 1973.