A Doctor of Veterinary Medicine student from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine has been elected president-elect of the Veterinary Business Management Association (VBMA), a national organization of veterinary students focused on the business side of the profession.

Tonya Sparks, of Blacksburg, Va. and member of the class of 2009 and existing president of the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine 's 120-member chapter, will assume leadership of the national association next year. That organization includes 1700 members and operates chapters at 22 of the 28 colleges of veterinary medicine in the country.

The VBMA is a student driven organization dedicated to advancing the profession through increased business knowledge, creating networking opportunities and empowering students to achieve their personal and professional goals, according to Dr. Robert Martin, faculty advisor to the college's chapter.

The VBMA is the fastest growing organization of veterinary students in the United States, said Martin, a professor in the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences and hospital director of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital.

The Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine (VMRCVM) is a two-state, three-campus professional school operated by the land-grant universities of Virginia Tech in Blacksburg and the University of Maryland at College Park. Its flagship facilities, based at Virginia Tech, include the Veterinary Teaching Hospital, which treats more than 40,000 animals annually. Other campuses include the Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center in Leesburg, Va., and the Avrum Gudelsky Veterinary Center at College Park, home of the Center for Government and Corporate Veterinary Medicine. The VMRCVM annually enrolls approximately 500 Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and graduate students, is a leading biomedical and clinical research center, and provides professional continuing education services for veterinarians practicing throughout the two states. Virginia Tech, the most comprehensive university in Virginia, is dedicated to quality, innovation, and results to the commonwealth, the nation, and the world.