Illinois Farm Bureau Selects Veterinary Student Loan Program Recipient




July 21, 2022                              


Tasha Bunting
Associate Director of Commodities and Livestock Programs
Illinois Farm Bureau®

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Illinois Farm Bureau (IFB) continues to support the education of the next generation of veterinarians focusing on caring for food animals through the Illinois Veterinary and Training (IVET) loan program.

Brandi Welch, a third-year student at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, was recently selected by the IVET Committee as its 2022 loan recipient. Welch will receive the IVET loan at the full amount of $40,000 with a $1,500 stipend to help pay expenses associated with clinical rotations.

“It is my goal to offer education and quality medicine to the clients and patients I will serve,” said Welch, who grew up in Mercer County. “Being an IVET loan recipient is an excellent opportunity for veterinary students to borrow money at a low interest rate (2%) while also upholding a commitment to Illinois farmers by practicing large animal medicine upon graduation.”

Welch became interested in animal health while learning to care for her own horses’ individual needs. Her long-term goal is to become a mixed-breed animal veterinarian and return to her hometown to eventually own a practice as there is a need for large animal veterinarians who producers can rely on in her community.

The IVET program provides up to $40,000 to as many as three veterinary students each year to help offset the cost of education. Loans are provided for a period of two to three years, and students in their fourth year in school are eligible for a $1,500 stipend. Loans are repaid over five years after graduation, during which graduates must commit to working in a food animal practice that services Illinois livestock producers.

“Illinois Farm Bureau encourages veterinary students to pursue a career in caring for food animals,” said Tasha Bunting, IFB associate director of commodity and livestock programs. “To succeed, farmers need the services of a food-animal veterinarian to help them care for their cattle, swine, sheep and poultry. It’s an incredibly rewarding career field that has seen an increase in demand in recent years.”

Illinois Farm Bureau established IVET in 2005. Since then, the organization has awarded more than $550,000 to 27 veterinary students who focus on caring for food animals in Illinois.

For more information about the program, visit


About Illinois Farm Bureau

The Illinois Farm Bureau is a member of the American Farm Bureau Federation, a national organization of farmers and ranchers. Founded in 1916, IFB is a non-profit, membership organization directed by farmers who join through their county Farm Bureau. IFB has a total membership of more than 372,326 and a voting membership of 77,462. IFB represents three out of four Illinois farmers.