Virginia Horse Owners Commit to Veterinary Education through AAEP Foundation

By Sally J. Baker, APR 

Thanks to the generous support of Renee and John Grisham through their Oakwood Foundation Charitable Trust, the AAEP Foundation has initiated the Oakwood Scholarship program by awarding $5,000 scholarships to five deserving equine veterinary students yesterday during the AAEP’s 63rd Annual Convention in San Antonio, Texas.
The 2017 Oakwood Scholarship winners are:
  • Devon Kartchner, Washington State University
  • Heather Morrissey, University of Florida
  • Jason Smith, Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Hayley Sullivan, Western University of Health Sciences
  • Hanum Wensil-Strow, University of Pennsylvania
Mrs. Grisham, an avid horsewoman and strong advocate for horse health, created the Oakwood Scholarships, along with her husband John Grisham. The Grishams, who own and operate Oakwood Farm in Covesville, Va., are long-time philanthropists whose dedication to education is among their many target philanthropic areas of interest.

 “With the help of the AAEP Foundation, I am pleased to offer this opportunity to benefit future equine veterinarians,” Mrs. Grisham said.

Second- and third-year veterinary students pursuing a career in equine medicine are encouraged to apply annually for one of five $5,000 scholarships being awarded through the newly created Oakwood Scholarship program.

The scholarship program is open to AAEP student members who are active within any of the AAEP’s 39 student chapters at colleges of veterinary medicine in the U.S., Canada, Europe and the Caribbean.

Scholarship recipients are selected based on a combination of academic standing, leadership roles and dedication to a career in equine healthcare. Some consideration also is given to financial need.

 “The support from the Grishams is incredible,” said Dr. Rick Mitchell, AAEP Foundation Advisory Council chairman. “To have horse owners step up like this exemplifies the importance that the Grishams have for the care of horses and their desire to make sure that veterinary students dedicated to equine medicine are given the opportunities to make an impact in the future.”

For information about this and other scholarship programs for equine veterinary students, visit the “Scholarships” page of the AAEP Foundation’s website,

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