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COVID Educational Creations Contest

This page summarizes the contest information for the COVID Educational Creations Contest sponsored by Merck Veterinary Manual and hosted by VetMedAcademy.

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VetMedAcademy and the Merck Veterinary Manual Announce the Winners of the “COVID Educational Creations” Contest for Veterinary Instructors and Veterinary Technician Instructors  - July 17, 2020


To celebrate instructor creativity during the COVID-19 pandemic of the last several months, VetMedAcademy and the Merck Veterinary Manual hosted and sponsored a contest to identify those who have discovered and deployed innovative online approaches to reaching and encouraging interaction with their distant students. VetMedAcademy and the Merck Veterinary Manual sought entries from instructors who had “turned lemons into lemonade.” The relevant topics included any in veterinary medicine and/or animal health, and any instructor (faculty, resident, intern or other) in veterinary or veterinary technician programs were eligible to apply.  Evidence of positive student feedback was in some cases submitted to strengthen the instructor’s entry. 


The submissions were reviewed on creativity and instructional merit by 4 judges: a practicing veterinarian, a recent veterinary graduate and past chair of the educational committee of the International Veterinary Students Association (IVSA), a veterinary specialist and editor, and an educationalist specializing in online education.


Submissions consisted of publishable “educational artifacts” of instruction. Thirteen cash prizes were awarded between $100 and the grand prize of $1,000 to faculty from 11 universities. All submitted educational resources are now published on as open-source resources. 

Full details about the contest and links to the special learning module containing these resources may be found at: and directly within the learning modules of VetMedAcademy at:

(free registration with VetMedAcademy required).

The award winners were in order of their placement were:


1. Ariana Boltax (Cornell University); Title: Communication Training Scenarios for Small Animal and Exotic Euthanasia 


Press Release from Cornell:


2. Shelly Olin, Jacqueline Whittemore, and Zenithson Ng (University of Tennessee);  Title: Pandemic Virtual Clinic


3. Margaret V. Root Kustritz, (University of Minnesota);  Title: Communications in Small Animal Practice


4. Stephen A. Hines (Washington State University) Title: Podcast-style case discussions with recent students to teach basic principles of immunology to first year DVM students


5. Allison J. Stewart  (University of Queensland); Title: International Equine Clinical Case Repository


6.Kendon Kuo  (Auburn University); Title: Emergency and Critical Care Jeopardy


7. Maria Fahie (Western University); Title: Assessment of Critical Thinking Assignment


8. Samira Schlesinger, Wolfgang Heuwieser, Stefan Borchardt, Peter Venjakob, Sebastian Arlt, Franziska Sutter, and Lisa Riege (Free University of Berlin); Title: Reproductive Veterinary Medicine: Cisco Webex Meetings


Honorable Mention


Roxanne Larsen, Christina Clarkson, Abby Brown, Anna Landherr, and Hannah Gytri (University of Minnesota) Title: Veterinary Anatomy Application and Dissection Review Sessions


Amber McNamara (Lees-McRae College); Title: Anesthesia in Wildlife Patients


Stephen Cole  (University of Pennsylvania);  Title:  Bug of the Day


Marcy Souza (University of Tennessee); Title: One Health: Community Education Materials


Philippa Gibbons  (Lincoln Memorial University); Title: Online Bovine Embryo Evaluation

About VetMedAcademy


VetMedAcademy ( is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to the creation, curation and free or low-cost sharing of veterinary and animal health educational resources, preferably according to the Creative Common Attribution open-source model. It seeks to encourage greater faculty-student interactivity and critical clinical thinking by veterinary students worldwide. It hosts a portal website as well as a learning management system website for sharing resources with individual learners and/or faculty interested in contributing expertise or using resources.


The Merck Veterinary Manual


The Merck Veterinary Manual ( offers authoritative guidelines for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders and diseases in companion, exotic, laboratory, and food animals, as well as contributor editorials, a newsfeed, quizzes and case studies, and images and videos of clinical conditions in animals. The Manual is available as a book and free website and as a mobile app for Apple or Android devices that can be downloaded at no charge.


Provided as a public service by Merck & Co., Inc., access to the website is free, unlimited, and requires no registration. The user experience is never compromised by advertising, commercial messaging, or sponsored content of any kind. 


About Merck


For more than a century, Merck, a leading global biopharmaceutical company known as MSD outside of the United States and Canada, has been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases.


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