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The School of Veterinary Medicine was established in 1978, opened in 1979, and graduated its first class in 1983. Established through the advocacy of President Jean Mayer, the school was unique in its affiliation to a health sciences complex rather than to a school of agriculture. The school is located on a 634 acre campus in Grafton, Massachusetts, site of a former state mental hospital. The school also shares facilities with the medical and dental schools on the downtown Boston campus, where vet students receive their first year of instruction in the basic sciences. Students at the veterinary school are exposed to care of all types of animals including food (cattle, sheep, swine, goat), fiber (sheep, llama), companion (dog, cat), and sporting (horse) animals. In addition, students are given the option of learning about care for wildlife through the wildlife medicine program. In addition to medicine, surgery, preventive medicine, and public health, the school also educates students about ethics, conservation medicine, and human-animal relationships.
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