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Homeward Bound Pets Humane Society Veterinary Assistant Scholarship

1 winner$1,000
Application Deadline
May 7, 2024
Winners Announced
Jun 7, 2024
Education Level
High School
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school student
3.0 or higher
Non-profit or volunteering experience
Field of Interest:
Veterinary assistant

Veterinary assistants have many opportunities for career advancement and benefit from a stable field. 

Between 2020 and 2030, the number of jobs for veterinary assistants is expected to grow by 14%, a higher rate than the national average for all jobs. Though veterinary assistants don’t have as lucrative careers as veterinarians, they can expand their opportunities by completing additional certificates and degrees.

This scholarship is funded by the Homeward Bound Pets Humane Society. Homeward Bound Pets Humane Society is Oregon's first no-kill animal shelter and has provided medical care, safe shelter, and plenty of TLC to the abandoned, neglected, homeless, and abused dogs and cats of Yamhill County since 1975.

This scholarship allows Homeward Bound Pets Humane Society to give back to their community, and support high school students who are planning to pursue veterinary assistant certificates.    

Any high school student with a 3.0 GPA or higher who has volunteering or non-profit experience and is applying to college for a two-year veterinary assistant certificate may apply for this scholarship. 

To apply, tell us about a time you contributed to your community and at least three well-thought-out reasons as to why you have decided to pursue a career as a veterinary assistant?

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Need, Boldest Profile
Published February 5, 2024
Essay Topic

Tell us about a contribution you've made to your community, and at least three well-thought-out reasons as to why you have decided to pursue a career as a veterinary assistant.

400–600 words

Winning Application

Isabeau Morrell
Newberg Senior High SchoolNewberg, OR
While I worked with Pawsitively Saved, I learned a lot about dog behavior, aggression signs, and restraint to de-escalate fights. It was often assumed that being in the field and truly doing the hard work, dealing with the harsh realities of euthanasia and how some animals just can't be saved, whether it be because of behavior or physical issues, would dispel my wish to become a veterinarian. Instead, I was spurred on to push harder to accomplish my goal. I realized how the animals that were to be euthanized often had no one by their side, no comfort in their last moments, rescue or not. I strived to become that grounding presence, and still hope to be that to this day, even if I am the one administering that final shot. From my very first day at home after being born, I was surrounded by fluffy tails and curious noses. Our dog at the time, named Tucker, was a very sweet and laid back guy. He protected me from our cats, despite how little they cared about my presence. He lived until I was around ten, if I remember correctly. He loved to lounge on the deck and watch the birds. While he was still here, we adopted another dog from some neighbors that were moving and couldn't take her with them. Her name was Zoey. Zoey had an eating disorder. She felt like she had to eat all the time. She was lazy, and plump, but the most loving dog an owner could ask for. Tucker passed in 2016, which made Zoey the lone dog of the household. She became depressed, and, honestly, so did I. That's when we adopted CJ. He was around six or seven months when we adopted him, but it was obvious that his previous life was filled with abuse from the moment we brought him home. I found myself wanting to heal him- he bore no physical scars, but his mind was covered in them. Even so, he's still a very sweet, very eager to please pup that I wish I could put in my pocket and bring everywhere with me. My urge to help animals began with CJ's mental scars, but, as time went on, my interests spread to being more physical, as well. The start of Zoey's decline was what truly pushed me towards this end goal. She could barely walk some days, couldn't control when she pooped or peed. I didn't realize it then, but I know now that the look she wore was one of shame. I wanted to fix her. She was only nine. She was my best friend, and she was dying at nine. It felt cruel. Unfair. I researched a lot following her death, and it became apparent that she most likely had something wrong with her spine; perhaps a tumor, perhaps something else. Whatever it was, I strive to make sure it never gets as bad as it did for her with any other animal I treat. She may have only been nine, but she was suffering. I wish that kind of suffering on no living thing. I dedicate my work to both her and CJ, but also to myself, as this journey of learning animal behaviors, memorizing medicines and treatments, has been the most fulfilling part of my life to date. I look forwards to pursuing my dreams, scholarship or not. Nothing will stop me from becoming a veterinarian.
Julia Bowers
Oregon State UniversityMedford, OR
I consistently have an internal drive to help any animal I possible can. Domesticated animals only exist because of humans, therefore we as a society are obligated to assure that they are taken care of. During a time where I retained an overwhelming feeling of helplessness about these animals in need, I encountered an opportunity to volunteer at a local humane society. I immediately took up that offer, and have been working with the shelter ever since. During my time at the shelter, I assure that the dogs have been exercising throughout the day. I make sure that both the dogs and cats get time for love, because they get lonely in the isolated compounds of shelter living. I assist in the cleanliness of the shelter as well, so no animal is trapped in not only an isolated but filthy environment. Childhood felt like a fever dream in my mind. My mother and I moved to a homestead with our extended family; and they owned many animals. It was my first experience with rural living, but I learned many valuable lessons along the way. My grandfather taught me how to raise animals which would later turn to food. Collecting eggs, honey, and milk from the goats turned into chores that brought me closer to my grandfather. Living with him sparked my interest in the field of veterinary science from the curiosity of what remained on the inside of those animals. I wanted to know what drove them to perform their instinctual rituals and how their bodies differed from a humans body. I questioned why humans had the capability of speech, whereas other animals could not obtain this skill. The interworkings of healing animals from their injuries particularly peaked my interest, as I wished I could fix things before it was too late. My first cat, Mumu, taught me that not every veterinarian is capable of handling every animal. My mother had taken her in for a routing procedure, as she was just bc enough to handle it. A few hours goes by, and I received a message from my mom, informing me of the death of my first cat. She died in the operating room; they dosed her with an incorrect amount of anesthesia, and she died. I was determined from that day on to care for every animal with as much detail and care possible, in hopes that no other pet parent will go through the loss of a healthy baby from silly mistakes.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 7, 2024. Winners will be announced on Jun 7, 2024.

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