Spring 2024 grad: Luke McCullough heads to vet school

Luke McCullough, who grew up in Juda, Wisconsin, will be graduating this spring with a bachelor’s in dairy science. In this Q&A, Luke talks about his role as student manager at campus’ Dairy Cattle Center, being on a winning team for the National Dairy Challenge competition, and his next steps to go to vet school and become a large animal veterinarian.

Why did you choose your major – and what did you learn, in a nutshell?
I chose my major, dairy science, because of my experience and passion for the dairy and agriculture industry. I wanted to go to vet school to become a large animal veterinarian, and dairy science was the perfect major for me. I learned a lot about both the management of a dairy farm as well as the anatomy and physiology of dairy cattle and other animals.

What other activities were you involved in?
While at UW-Madison, I am a member of Badger Dairy Club, UW Poultry Club, UW-Madison Collegiate Farm Bureau, Alpha Gamma Rho, and UW-Madison Dairy Challenge. I also am a member of Dr. Heather White’s research lab, and I also was a student manager at the Dairy Cattle Center.

What are your future academic and/or career plans – short-term and long-term?
I am accepted into vet school at the UW-Madison School of Veterinary Science, and I plan to become a large animal veterinarian to work primarily with cattle.

What were the most valuable/meaningful college experiences you had?
The most valuable and meaningful college experience I had was when I was a student manager at the Dairy Cattle Center for a year and a half. I gained a lot of leadership experience, learned how to better problem solve, and learned how to balance my responsibilities. My position at the Dairy Cattle Center has given me countless experiences to better prepare me for my future career.

When you think about your time here as a student, what are you proud of?
I was able to compete at the National Dairy Challenge competition on the UW-Madison team, and I am very proud to say that our team placed first in our division with a very good score from the judges. The competition was hosted in California, so it proves that UW-Madison properly prepares its students to face challenges anywhere across the country.  

Do you have any advice you’d like to share with CALS students?
One piece of advice I have for CALS students is to eagerly look for different opportunities offered by different clubs in CALS. For example, I joined the UW-Madison Poultry Club last fall because of a recommendation from a friend, even though I don’t have much interest in poultry. I really enjoy the Poultry Club, and I was even given the opportunity for a club trip down to the International Production and Processing Expo in Atlanta this past spring.