Colorado State University Student Wins Bayer Excellence in Communication Award National Scholarship

May 07, 2013, 09:00 ET from Bayer HealthCare LLC

SHAWNEE, Kan., May 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Bayer HealthCare LLC, Animal Health Division is proud to announce that Jessica Bridge, a junior at Colorado State University's College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, is the inaugural national winner of the Bayer Excellence in Communication Award. Bayer HealthCare Animal Health launched the award program this year to highlight the importance of effective client communication in veterinary practices, and to reward veterinary students who are mastering this critical skill.

In its inaugural year, seven leading veterinary schools were selected by Bayer HealthCare to pilot the award program. The competition included submission of a filmed interview in a clinical setting between the veterinary student and a client. Entries submitted at each school were evaluated by a panel of faculty judges. Faculty selected their school's local winner using a scorecard developed by nationally-renowned veterinary faculty who specialize in communication. The seven winners each received a $2,500 scholarship and were entered to compete for the additional, national $2,500 scholarship. Jessica demonstrated effective use of core communication skills throughout her client interview, including talking the client through what would happen during their visit and asking the clients' understanding of the medical topic during the educational part of their conversation.

"Colorado State University understands that communication skills are critical to the success of the veterinary profession and we applaud Bayer HealthCare for supporting this important topic," said Dr. Mark Stetter, Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. "We are really excited and proud that our veterinary student, Jessica Bridge, has won this prestigious scholarship. She is a wonderful role model and demonstrates how excellent communication benefits both animals and people."

"Bayer HealthCare commends Jessica Bridge and all of the outstanding finalists for the commitment they have demonstrated to becoming skilled communicators," said Ian Spinks, president and general manager of Bayer HealthCare Animal Health, North America. "Strong communication skills will not only help them build client relationships, but also ensure a high quality of care for the animals they treat."

A long-standing commitment to strengthening veterinary communication

The Bayer Excellence in Communication Award is one facet of a larger initiative aimed at advancing the communication skills of the next generation of veterinarians. In 2001, Bayer HealthCare Animal Health partnered with the Institute for Healthcare Communication to establish the Bayer Communication Project. This collaborative partnership resulted in an extensive set of communication skills training modules offered to colleges of veterinary medicine for incorporation into their curriculum. Selected faculty from all U.S. veterinary colleges have been trained via the Bayer Communication Project "Train the Trainer" program.

In addition to the national winner scholarship, Colorado State University will receive complimentary tuition and travel for one faculty member to attend an upcoming Bayer Communication Project "Train the Trainer" course developed and taught by the Institute for Healthcare Communication.

The winning veterinary students from the other six pilot schools in the inaugural Bayer Excellence in Communication Award program are:

  • Jessie Hennessey, Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Amanda Sherman, Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Carolina Nunez, Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
  • Francesca Carey, University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine
  • Zach Daniel, University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Michael Fink, University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine

About Bayer HealthCare
The Bayer Group is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. Bayer HealthCare, a subgroup of Bayer AG with annual sales of EUR 18.6 million (2012), is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry and is based in Leverkusen, Germany. The company combines the global activities of the Animal Health, Consumer Care, Medical Care and Pharmaceuticals divisions. Bayer HealthCare's aim is to discover, develop, manufacture and market products that will improve human and animal health worldwide. Bayer HealthCare has a global workforce of 55,300 employees (Dec 31, 2012) and is represented in more than 100 countries. More information at

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SOURCE Bayer HealthCare LLC