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Kirsten Welborn

M.S. in Animals and Public Policy (MAPP) Externship Experience
May-August 2021
CARE-ing for Humans and Animals in Research: Compassion Fatigue in Laboratory Animal Professionals
Kirsten Welborn

I spent my summer working with Brown University’s Center for Animal Resources and Education (CARE) where I studied compassion fatigue (CF) in laboratory animal professionals. I spent the summer researching CF, compiling articles, meeting with CF experts, creating and developing training materials, and presenting to staff at Brown. Although my externship was remote, I had the opportunity to tour Brown’s facility in Providence, RI and host meetings with staff, where I learned about their experiences with CF. Through MAPP coursework, I expanded my knowledge within the animal research field and was provoked to examine how people issues are intertwined with the animal issues. Early on in the MAPP program, there was a lecture where the speaker said “caring for animals means caring for people.” And I am excited to do just that. Throughout the program I was employed full-time at Charles River Laboratories, where I am continuing my career with expanded roles as on the compassion fatigue team and corporate resiliency building ambassador (RBA) at my site.

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