CARE establishes scholarships for Gaston College Vet Tech students

Vet tech student with dogCARE | Charlotte Animal Referral & Emergency recently signed an agreement with the Gaston College Foundation to fund annual scholarships for second-year students in the Gaston College Veterinary Medical Technology program. CARE, the Charlotte region’s advanced medical center for pets, is a state-of-the-art veterinary facility that offers 24/7 emergency care and board-certified specialty care.

The purpose of the CARE | Charlotte Animal Referral & Emergency Scholarship fund is to promote diversity and inclusion of under-represented populations in the veterinary industry while providing financial assistance for promising veterinary medical technology students who have the ability but not the financial resources to attend college.

“One of CARE’s core values is diversity,” said Peggy Sayer, DVM, ACVIM Cardiology, and CEO of CARE. “Because we recognize the need for more minority representation in the veterinary profession, our practice established two veterinary tech scholarships at Gaston College to support students in under-represented populations. We value our relationship with the College and its students and look forward to watching this initiative grow.”

The two $1,000 scholarships will be awarded annually to students who have met the eligibility criteria, including maintaining a minimum 3.0 GPA and meeting all of the Veterinary Medical Technology program requirements. The scholarships will be paid in $500 increments to the students’ accounts after registration for the fall and spring semesters. The first two scholarships will be awarded in fall 2021. Information on applying for the scholarships is at

CARE will also give preference for work-based learning opportunities to scholarship recipients. Work-based learning experience is required for completion of the Gaston College Vet Tech program.

“I truly cannot say enough good things about CARE,” said Melanie Skinner, RVT, director of Veterinary Medical Technology. “From day one, CARE has been about creating a positive, diverse, inclusive working environment. Partners Dr. Laura Dvorak, Dr. Amy Fauber, and Dr. Peggy Sayer are very supportive of the veterinary technician profession and, besides this scholarship, provide veterinary technology students with a year-long internship rotating through a variety of veterinary specialties. CARE employs many our graduates, and I am grateful not only for the care they demonstrate for their employees and the future of our profession, but also for the exceptional care they give our pets. Their generosity with this scholarship is reflective of the content of their character and will ensure that our profession continues to benefit from diversity.”

Each year since 2017, has ranked the Gaston College Veterinary Medical Technology program as the 14th best in the United States. The program has a 100 percent job placement rate, with many of its students being hired during their work-based learning externships. The Vet Tech program will be represented at the Gaston College Fall Open House on Saturday, October 2, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

“The generosity of CARE demonstrates the value of Gaston College’s Vet Tech program and the impact of the public-private partnership to ensure student success,” said Luke Upchurch, executive director of the Gaston College Foundation. The Foundation welcomes inquiries from companies, individuals, and organizations interested in investment opportunities that will transform the lives of Gaston College students and prepare the future workforce.

About CARE | Charlotte Animal Referral & Emergency

CARE is a state-of-the-art veterinary facility offering board-certified specialty care based on referrals from primary veterinarians as well as 24/7/365 emergency care. Our specialty services include internal medicine, cardiology, neurology, surgery, oncology and ophthalmology. CARE’s veterinarians are supported by advanced diagnostic services such as ultrasonography, echocardiography, endoscopy, non-invasive surgical procedures, rapid-scan CT imaging and high-field MRI, in addition to many others. For more information, visit or call 704-457-2300.

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