Rebecca Walker, winner of Recent Graduate Practitioner of the Year award from the Texas Veterinary Medical Association
by Susie P. Gonzalez
The child of animal lovers in suburban Los Angeles, Rebecca Latta Walker’s parents took in injured animals such as rabbits, geese, and even a red-tailed hawk to rehabilitate and release back into the wild. So it was a natural progression to major in biology when she got to Trinity. Before graduating in 1998, she thought briefly about applying to medical school. But her love for animals steered her to veterinary school, and she was accepted at Texas A&M University. “When I got there, I was amazed that my education at Trinity was of such a higher caliber than other students had received at undergraduate schools.” She said Trinity’s classes were demanding – especially the physiology labs and all her biology and chemistry courses – and required her to go to class, study hard, and take personal responsibility for writing notes in class. “Trinity put me ahead of the game,” she says.
She sailed through vet school and graduated magna cum laude, joining a 10-member staff at Hill Country Animal Hospital, a small animal clinic in Helotes a week after receiving her veterinarian’s degree in May 2003. Dr. Walker loved working with horses in vet school and considered becoming an equine practitioner until the realization sunk in that most horse owners prefer male doctors. At the Helotes clinic, she quickly won over clients with her professionalism and ability to exude both confidence and compassion as a young vet. In 2004, she was named the Recent Graduate Practitioner of the Year by the Texas Veterinary Medical Association.
“I credit my success in such a wonderful profession to the education and experiences I had while at Trinity,” Dr. Walker says. “I frequently find myself saying that attending Trinity was the best decision I ever made.” At Trinity, she was a soccer player and a member of the Spurs social sorority. She later married Tristan Walker, also a Trinity alumnus from the Class of ’95, and they now have a baby daughter, Ainslee. Dr. Walker took a break from work after her daughter was born on Oct. 31 but plans to usher in 2005 by returning to the vet clinic.