Jenna Slevin '22
Growing up, Jenna Slevin planned to pursue a career in the arts. While she still draws and paints, her career goal now is to become a veterinarian. Slevin’s main hobby these days is crocheting items for friends and family. She also enjoys exploring different fitness realms and workouts as well as trying out vegetarian recipes.
How does it feel to have been asked to offer the welcome at Commencement alongside your classmate Ayah Badawy?
It is truly an amazing honor, and I am grateful for the opportunity. As a shy individual, public speaking can be nerve-racking; however, I have grown so much over my four years at St. Francis College and had such an exceptional experience that I want to offer a special message to my classmates, the faculty and my family. It’s a wonderful way to conclude my SFC journey.
Why did you pursue a B.S. in biology at St. Francis College?
My goal is to become a veterinarian. In my freshman year, I started working at an animal hospital after volunteering there for four years. Balancing work and school was interesting, but it was an important experience in developing skills for my academic, professional and personal life.
What professor, classroom experience or extracurricular activity at SFC had the greatest impact on your success here?
The SFC community has been extremely influential in helping me develop into the person I am today. I have acquired an inner strength to face challenges and embrace change. Majoring in biology can be challenging, but I am grateful for the enhanced problem-solving and time-management skills I obtained through my courses. As my first class at SFC, General Biology with Dr. Dell was impactful in setting the baseline for my academic career of the past four years. Microbiology with Dr. Ruiz was wonderful as well. Despite the complexities, I very much enjoyed the material. Ultimately, this class boosted my confidence in my academic abilities.
What was the topic of your honors thesis?
“The Price of a Priceless Companion: A Case for Preventative Veterinary Care,” in which I addressed the high cost of veterinary health care and proposed solutions to combat it. I proposed the idea of a 12-month subscription package that allows veterinarians to customize the needs of a pet (wellness exams, vaccines and lab work, food, treats, toys) regarding its health care regimen. My thesis is truly a passion project. Although I finished writing it, this topic is something to which I will continue to dedicate my career.
What does it mean to you to have attended college in New York City?
I live in Brooklyn and have always attended schools here; however, this was my first time attending a school outside of my neighborhood and commuting. It was an important experience, as commuting led to a greater appreciation for Brooklyn and New York overall. I have many memories of my journeys to and from school, whether they were on the R and N trains or the South Brooklyn ferry.
What’s next for you?
I am applying to veterinary graduate schools. Over the next year, as I prepare for and choose a school, I will be working full-time and venturing into volunteer projects. The animal hospital where I work is a general practice for small animals (cats and dogs, primarily, plus bunnies and guinea pigs, and exotics, such as birds), and I would like to acquire experience with large animals, such as horses, and explore varying fields and specialties. Finalizing my time at SFC has been a wonderfully bittersweet experience. I look back on these four years with great pride in what I accomplished, with gratitude for what I gained and with excitement for how I will continue to grow. Although I will miss SFC greatly, I will always be immensely thankful for the opportunity to attend and the terrific memories I made along the way.