Globe University-Madison West’s resident veterinarian, Jane (JR) Lund, recently traded in her scrubs for her military uniform as she embarked to Afghanistan for service.
This is Captain Jane Lund’s first trip to Afghanistan serving with the Kandahar Agribusiness Development Team V as the team veterinarian. JR’s deployment started in mid-April and will run for six months.
I chatted with JR via email to learn more, and here is what she has to share.
What are your primary responsibilities during this deployment?
“As the team veterinarian I serve as a veterinary subject matter expert and animal husbandry specialist for Kentucky National Guard Agribusiness Development Team V. The team is operating in Kandahar Province. I assist in the concept development and implementation of viable animal husbandry projects and supporting documents/drawings and assess veterinary need and support within communities.
“I mentor GIRoA (Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan) officials, specifically the district DAIL (Director of Agriculture, Irrigation, Livestock) with design of and coordination of appropriate, Afghan-led, programs within the community thereby providing increased stability within villages. I conduct train the trainer sessions in animal health, disease, treatment, nutrition and husbandry programs with district para-veterinarians. I am currently doing military working dog veterinary care also.”
What is the most challenging part of this experience?
“Being away from my daughter, Isabella, family and friends.”
What surprised you most about your tour so far?
“The area that I work is very conservative. Afghan women are not in public without a burka covering them from head to toe. I work with many different male Afghans and was concerned how I would be received as a female. It seems that women in the military are seen almost as a third sex. We are not treated as men but are also not treated as Afghan women. I typically wear a head scarf and my uniform. I participate in meetings with the men, can offer my advice and eat with them. I’m also surprised by the lack of human, particularly women’s rights, also the challenges that Afghans face on a day-to-day basis and will be facing to stabilize their country as we continue to withdraw. Lastly, the beauty of this country and the people in it.”
Is there anything else you want to share with our readers?
“I also found surprising how so many Americans have forgotten that there is still a war in Afghanistan. Thanks for supporting the troops. These soldiers are over here working hard every day.”
We want to thank JR for sharing her story and most of all, for her service. We are honored that JR is part of our veterinary technology program and wish her a safe return home.
Want to show your support for our Service members? Check out http://www.ourmilitary.mil/care-packages for a list of organizations that can help you get started.