Describe a situation where circumstances were against you and how you made it work for you.
My mom has been struggling with her bill payments for years. The struggle was so unbearable that necessitated our family to move from West Los Angeles to the San Fernando Valley. The move was not much of a big deal to me because it was only about a 45minute drive difference. However, shortly after a month before my first semester of college, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer.
She stopped going to work and needed more support at home. The school I was planning to go to was in Santa Monica, but I knew that was not a smart choice because if my mother needed me, I would be too far to make it to her in time. I attended *** instead, so I would be home long enough to cook my mother breakfast, lunch, and dinner while maintaining a clean environment in the house and taking care of her medical needs.
I was not familiar with the campus, nor any of the students, but I was highly interested in the college’s pre-veterinary program. I spent my time on campus connecting with people on the same path as me and involved in the program. Being in school and, at the same time, taking care of my mother was extremely tough to balance. Despite the case, I managed to successfully study and do my homework late at night when she would go to sleep. I adapted to little sleep and balancing my tasks during this period because I knew both cases were important for my future.
I knew that if I kept a positive mindset, I could get through this challenge in my life. When the turn came for me to take my mother to the hospital for her medical procedures, I would have to stay for hours. In this case, I would carry my school assignment with me to work on while at the hospital.
Most of my time was spent caring for my mother and at school. Given this case, I decided to put my head high and doubts low because I knew that If I panicked and had any doubts, it would be hard for me to continue schooling while helping my mother. A year later, my mother was cancer free, and I was on my path to apply to undergraduate school. I was able to handle the situation while in school and did not give up.
A. Describe a situation in which your actions have had a significant impact. *
One situation that made me feel that I had a significant impact was during my encounter with a rescued patient by the name Rocky. The victim was a pure-bred six-year-old German Shepherd, who was severely abused by his previous owners and was quickly brought into the clinic as an emergency case. Rockys right rib was fractured, and he had many open cuts. We quickly took X-rays and went straight into surgery. As the anesthesia acted on Rocky, I quickly placed the endotracheal tube into the trachea and tied the string attached to the tube behind his ears. I quickly turned on the oxygen and attached the F-circuit to the endotracheal tube and turned on the isoflurane, with supervision. At the same time, I applied a pulse-oximeter probe on the tongue to monitor the heart rate. During surgery, I monitored Rockys breathing and constantly checked his tongue and gums for any signs of low oxygen flow (purple color).
A few days later, Rocky was still fearful of humans due to the abuse he sadly faced from his previous owners. He strayed away from every human and barely ate the food given to him while at the hospital. Rocky avoided being walked around, was too scared to eat, and pressed himself against the corner of the wall. At the risk of getting a bite, I sat on the floor with Rocky, and slowly went closer and closer every few minutes. I placed my hand firmly close to him to show him that I was not a threat and slowly moved towards the top of his head. I gently patted Rocky, and he started to calm down. I put some food in my hand and placed my hand under his mouth, and he began eating. Rocky continued eating the rest of his food, after which I took him for a walk. After my eye-opening experience, he began to eat all his food and did not stray away from any other co-workers/people.
B. Describe a situation where you have learned from experience. *
While volunteering at the **, I got hands-on experience on how to properly perform tube feeding, also known as gavage, for various types of avian species. Under this classification, the types of birds I have worked with include: Coopers Hawk, Blue Jays, Owls, Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, California Condor, Pelicans, ducks, geese, Segals, robins, ravens, chicken, turkey, finches, pigeons, parrots, falcons, and different raptors. Tube feeding is essential for avian health as it ensures that the bird does not die from hunger and can get the nutrients to help it survive. During tube feeding, I would first create the formula for the specific species and this by following the diet instructions. Generally, the formula had to be slightly warm. A majority of my patients were fed three to four times a day. In the process of feeding, I would attach the syringe that contained the formula to a tube that was the appropriate size for the bird. When my turn came to tube feed the bird, I would put the tube slowly in the esophagus and gently place a few fingers on the throat to trace where the tube is going. It is highly important to not accidentally place the tube in the glottis, because it will lead the formula/food to go to the lungs, killing the bird. On the other hand, while assuming the responsibility of restraining the bird to allow another co-worker tube-feed the bird, I would hold the bird against my upper-stomach, arms over the wings (gently), and hold the tarsus of the bird to avoid injury from the sharp claws. I have been in both positions for tube feeding, and have performed this procedure about one-hundred times.
Describe a challenge or problem you have faced in the past and how you reached a solution.
I went with my friend to the park for a picnic, whereby I had bought pre-made food for both of us. Initially, we had met for about three times, so I did not know much about her. While we were sitted in the park and eating our food, her chest and half her body became itchy and red, like a horrible rash. She started to have difficulty breathing and tried to ask me if peanuts were in the food. I looked at the package and noticed there was. Nobody else was in sight at the park to help us. She was trying to catch her breathe, showing signs of anaphylaxis. I knew that she would have to carry an epinephrine injection on her for emergency cases like this. In this case, I asked her if she has it, and she pointed at the car. I knew I did not have that much time because her face was turning dark red, with my biggest worry being if her tongue and face would turn purple. I quickly ran to the car and got the epinephrine injection from the glove box and injected her thigh. The injection instantly helped her since her color restored, and her throat opened up to allow her to breathe normally again. After that, I placed her in the passenger seat and took her to the emergency room.
If you had to face this challenge again, would you do anything differently, and why? *
In the future, if I ever buy food for someone, I will ask if the person is allergic to anything before giving the food to him/her. However, if I encounter this situation again, I would quickly call the police while looking for the epinephrine injection. In case it happens that there is an epinephrine injection at my disposal, I will inject him or her to save the situation. If the epinephrine injection is not there, I will ask others for help around me as I call the ambulance comes. Before the ambulance gets at the scene, I will lay the person down and try to make him or her calm.
Discuss how your work experience has encompassed one or more of our college values.
I believe that working as a Veterinary assistant at the *** has enabled me to express all of the college values: accountability, compassion, diversity, excellence, innovation, integrity, and teamwork. Teamwork was illustrated when I worked together with the Veterinarians and RVTs by assisting the Veterinarians in surgery, with injections, by inputting and setting up the IV, assisting with cytology, setting up a patient for surgery, working with emergency cases, and assisting with euthanasia. Diversity was embraced when we all shared our different ideas about the case while brainstorming on the solutions. On the other hand, accountability, compassion, integrity, and excellence was portrayed in work I did by taking responsibility and putting in all my effort to heal my patients. Some of the work I performed using these values include: radiography, laser therapy, centrifuging, checking the patients glucose level, using a sphygmomanometer, inputting and sending blood/fecal/urine/culture samples in database, expressed and packed anal glands, setting up oxygen therapy, restraining animals, feeding and orally medicating animals, performing the three-step eye test, cleaning ears, cutting nails, performing dental work, along with assisting in blood draw, urinalysis, and injecting.