CVM goes to Croatia

In its effort to strengthen its international engagements, four faculty members of the VSU College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) conducted a two-week counterpart visit to the University of Zagreb (UniZG) in Croatia.

This is part of the Erasmus+ Staff Mobility for Training Program that provides faculty learning mobility opportunities to encourage professional growth and boost internationalization initiatives among partner universities. VSU is the lone university in the Philippines to be part of this prestigious program.

The VSU faculty members who joined the trip include the International Affairs Head Dr. Ana Marquiza M. Quilicot, Department Head of Veterinary Paraclinical Sciences Dr. Lotis M. Balala, Department Professor of Veterinary Basic Science Dr. Agnes M. Taveros, and former CVM Dean Dr. Eugene B. Lañada.

The CVM group departed on April 14, 2022 at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) bringing with them their expertise in veterinary medicine, as well as their rich local teaching experience in the said field. They returned to the Philippines after 17 days of fun-filled learning engagements with their counterparts at UniZG.

Few weeks before flying to Croatia, VSU welcomed three visiting professors from UniZG’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine who were also recipients of the Erasmus+ program to conduct a three-day lecture series about avian and reptile medicine.

With the same purpose as the visiting professors who went to VSU, Dr. Lañada also delivered lectures at UniZG covering topics on community rabies control activities, preventive behaviors on dog-borne zoonoses, smallholder semi-scavenging chicken systems, and efforts towards LaSota vaccination against Newcastle disease in the Philippines.


The other members of the VSU delegation participated in an extensive training on small animal surgery, microbiology, and poultry medicine. 

They also had a meeting with the Dean and the Vice-Deans of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine where Dr. Quilcot discussed the renewal of the agreement for the mobility program between the two universities.

The mobility program renewal would greatly strengthen the partnership between the two universities and will also contribute to the internationalization program of VSU. 

Making the most of their time, the VSU VetMed delegation also had a tour around the different departments, laboratories and clinics of UniZG. They also visited a modern facility on teaching bee production.

Capping their more than two weeks of trip to Croatia was a visit at the most famous Plitvice Lakes National Park which is considered as a UNESCO heritage site.


Dr. Lotis M. Balala, the Head of the VSU Department of Veterinary Paraclinical Sciences, explained how her maiden trip to Croatia was valuable for CVM and for the future directions of their college.

“The whole trip for me was an amazing experience because it’s my first time to visit Europe. It was personally overwhelming to see the modern facilities and equipment of the University of Zagreb and I’m hoping that sometime soon, our own veterinary medicine program in VSU will also be able to acquire the same facilities and equipment that they have there so that we can truly provide a world class veterinary education that will be comparable to global standards,” Dr. Balala said.

The whole delegation returned to the Philippines on April 30 carrying with them new experiences that will surely be valuable in their function as professors and as practicing veterinarians.  

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