The Commencement and Hooding Ceremony at Oklahoma State University’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences will be a special day for Virginia A. Parrish, Ph.D. Dr. Parrish will hood her daughter, Kiana Adkisson, as Kiana graduates from OSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.
“I feel extremely proud of Kiana and her accomplishments,” says Dr. Parrish. “When she was 13, Kiana asked me to type a letter she had written to the local veterinarian volunteering her free time to feed and water animals at the clinic, walk the dogs, sweep floors, etc. As Kiana mailed the letter, I thought of the ways I would prepare her for the disappointment of rejection. To my surprise and to Kiana’s delight, she received a positive response. She worked for several years at the clinic and so began her great love for God’s ‘little critters’.”
Kiana is not sure when she first decided to be a veterinarian.
“I remember spending hours outside reading books by James Herriott, fascinated by the stories of his compassion and love for animals and for medicine,” recalls Kiana. “Like most people, the initial desire to be an ‘animal doctor’ was fueled by love of fuzzy little animals. When I grew older, the human-animal bond and always changing world of medicine/science became the reasons I chose this profession.”
Following graduation, Kiana will join the Hillside Veterinary Hospital in Charles Town, W. Va., to practice small animal medicine.
“I hope to combine traditional medicine with holistic modalities to aid in treatment of my patients,” she says. “I would love to specialize in holistic medicine and become better educated in the subjects of behavior and nutrition.”
“Kiana’s strengths are many but some are honesty, directness, perseverance, and a deep love for the Earth, all of Creation and for the Creator (God),” smiles Dr. Parrish. “On a lighter side, some of the strengths she inherited through example from her father, Larry, her late grandparents, and me are spit, grit, and determination.”
Kiana says that the challenge of thinking outside the box and gaining confidence in her own intellectual abilities are the things she liked most about studying veterinary medicine.
“The last four years have been the most intense growing experience in my life. This college has provided a phenomenal staff that balances the art of challenging students to be their best and encouraging them at the same time. I would not change this experience for anything in the world!”