Two AVMA members are among the 78 women taking part in an expedition to Antarctica that serves as the culmination of a year-long program to develop the leadership and strategic skills of women in science.
Drs. Elisa Harvey and Jill Lynn are among only four veterinarians worldwide that were selected for this year’s expedition, the second such trip organized by the Homeward Bound program, a leadership, strategic and science initiative for women that aims to heighten the influence and impact of women with a science background in order to influence policy and decision making as it shapes our planet.
Following nearly a year of leadership training provided remotely, Drs. Harvey and Lynn recently joined the other participants in Argentina, where they will continue their training and development before setting off for their expedition to Antarctica on February 18. They will be at sea for approximately three weeks, where they will collaborate with other participants on topics of interest through “Symposium at Sea” presentations that take place on board.
Dr. Harvey, a 1992 veterinary graduate of Tufts University, is a practicing veterinarian and biotech consultant from Maryland who is passionate about improving human, animal and environmental health. Her varied career has included practice, regulatory work with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and private-sector biotech consulting, and she’s no stranger to international work. During her travels, she developed a strong passion for One Health, which is one of the reasons she applied for the Homeward Bound program.
“One Health started to just really resonate for me, and this tapped into that,” she said. “I believe in One Health, and the planet is part of that. It’s all intertwined.”
Dr. Lynn, who received her DVM from Michigan State in 2008, owns and operates a mobile veterinary clinic in Sault Sainte Marie, Mich., and also serves as a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve Veterinary Corps. Like Dr. Harvey, Dr. Lynn’s work has taken her outside the country to advance animal health.
After closely following the first Homeward Bound cohort, she knew the experience was right for her and began the rigorous application process.
“It looked like a wonderful opportunity to collaborate and work with other women. Obviously, adventure is a big and exciting part of this, but it also has to do with leadership training, strategic capability, collaboration,” said Dr. Lynn.
“There’s a lot of important work leading up to this experience. We’re ready to see what we can all do in our own way. The trip is just the beginning of the process,” she said.
For updates on the expedition, visit the AVMA@Work blog.