Students of the Future: Rebekah Chagdes and Cali Piper

This is the sixth in a series of articles covering extraordinary CFHS students and what they plan to do in the future. Juniors Rebekah Chagdes and Cali Piper both plan to be veterinarians and help animals to the best of their abilities. Here’s more about them and their dreams.

Chagdes said schooling to become a veterinarian can take about four-eight years, but “it will be worth it in the end. This profession not only helps animals, but in a way, also helps people.” Even though she has been in love with animals for a long time she only decided she wanted to be a veterinarian around October of last year, originally wanting to be a nurse. 

She is currently working at a vet clinic with boarding dogs. During her time there she has learned more about animals and how to interact with them. At the high school she has also been taking more science-focused classes to help with her future. 

However recently during work, when a dog passed away, she did doubt her mission at first, but she realized that’s the hardest part of being a vet and has kept pushing toward her dream. 

“If you have a dream, chase it. You’re going to meet people who are mean, hurtful and discouraging toward your dream and toward your future. Especially in high school. You need to know that life is so much better outside of high school and these discouraging people won’t be in your life forever. You are smart enough. You are good enough. You can do this if you put your mind to it,” Chagdes said.

Ten years from now Chagdes said she hopes to open her own vet clinic after finishing college, helping animals in the best way she possibly can.

Like Chagdes, Piper also plans to become a veterinarian. After high school she plans to go to Iowa State as it has a huge veterinary program. 

During high school she has been taking a multitude of science classes including human anatomy. She said she hopes this class can open some doors for her. 

Since around ninth grade, she knew she wanted to be a vet. Her sister being a vet has also helped push her down that career path. As a veterinarian she said she hopes to see less animals put down and wants to keep animals off the euthanasia list, helping not only them but also their prospective new owners. 

Ten years from now, Piper wants to care, foster and become a part of the vet team to continue helping animals. To dreamers, Piper said, “Just try your best. Look at what you want to be and push for it. Take classes you need, but don’t push yourself too hard into it.”

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