York School News

Alumni Spotlight: Kathleen Bowman ‘14

"...the University Counselling team was instrumental in helping me understand exactly what I needed to do.”

When Kathleen Bowman ‘14 joined The York School in Grade 6, she already knew what she wanted to be when she grew up. “My dad read me the James Herriot book All Creatures Great and Small when I was very young,” recalls Kathleen, “and I had my heart set on being a vet ever since.” It turns out that following her heart would take her on quite the adventure, first to Dalhousie for her undergrad, and then on to Ireland to study at University College Dublin’s School of Veterinary Medicine (UCD).
Reflecting on her time at York, Kathleen believes she was well-prepared for university due in large part to the many opportunities she had in high school to hone her presentation skills. “I was a member of the honour band and led the clarinet ensemble, which gave me the chance not only to perform in front of an audience but also to practice my leadership skills,” she explains. 

Add to that the emphasis put on making presentations in most of her classes, and Kathleen felt ready for the demands of both undergrad and vet school. “Having the confidence to speak publicly in front of large groups has served me really well in school as well as in my professional life, and I owe much of that to The York School,” she says.

For Kathleen, the decision to study abroad was something that was born out of necessity, since veterinary schools in Canada require candidates to only apply to schools in their home province, leaving her with limited options. “When I was in high school, the University Counselling team was instrumental in helping me understand exactly what I needed to do,” says Kathleen, “and four years later when I was in my final year at Dalhousie, I reached out to the team back at York once again and received help with my applications to vet school.” 

As a graduate of UCD, which is one of only seven schools in Europe fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), Kathleen is also licensed to practice in both Canada and the US. She practiced in Dublin for just over a year and enjoyed the experience of living and working in a different country. In August 2023, Kathleen returned to Canada and is now practicing at VCA Mount Pleasant Davisville Animal Hospital in Toronto, where she treats dogs and cats.

Kathleen is passionate about the role she plays in protecting and improving animals’ health. “I have always known I wanted to be a vet and today I’m living that dream. I’m thankful to York for helping me chart my individual path, and for supporting me even after I graduated,” she says.

About the York School

The York School is a gender-inclusive JK to Grade 12 independent school located in the heart of Toronto. The York School was founded in 1965 and is the first English speaking school in Canada accredited to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) from junior kindergarten (JK) to university entrance. As an IB World School, The York School's motto is Experience Teaches.

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