College of Agriculture faculty and staff contribute information to textbook

Published By: Russell Boone May 10, 2017

Dr. Oreta Samples (front), Dr. George McCommon (background, left) and Anna Ellis (background right) display the latest edition of the Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians scheduled for use by FVSU veterinary technology students in the fall of 2017.

Students studying veterinary technology across the country will reference a source featuring the knowledge and experience of two Fort Valley State University College of Agriculture professors and one of its veterinary technicians.

Dr. Oreta Samples, coordinator of FVSU’s Master of Public Health program, Dr. George McCommon, director of FVSU’s Veterinary Sciences Department and Anna Ellis, veterinary technician, collaborated and wrote six chapters in the ninth edition of “McCurnin’s Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians.”

Samples co-edited the textbook with Joanna Bassett, program director of the veterinary technology program at Manor College in Jenkintown, Pa. and Angela Beal, program director of the Veterinary Tech Institute at Bradford School in Columbus, Ohio.

The FVSU instructor said the publication is considered the bible of all veterinary technician programs. “It is pretty much used worldwide for veterinary technician studies,” Samples said.

 Samples added that the textbook will be required reading for all FVSU veterinary technology students. “It covers veterinary technology from beginning to end, with particular emphasis on what students need to know in order to pass the veterinary technicians national board exam,” Samples said.

“You really don’t have to use another textbook as long as you have this one,” McCommon said. McCommon said having a faculty member or program coordinator listed on the cover of a highly used and regarded textbook speaks volumes for FVSU.

He also said to have FVSU personnel contribute six chapters is very impressive. “It really makes the (veterinary technology) program and the university look really good. This is an opportunity to highlight the quality of workmanship that’s coming out of this department,” McCommon said.

Samples, who reviewed or edited more than 150 books, journals and articles in the veterinary field, said she was contacted by Bassett to co-edit the publication because of her past editing experience.

She was also recommended by a senior editor at Elsevier Publishing, a textbook publishing company which has a large line of veterinary science textbooks. For her role as a co-editor, Samples was given the opportunity to write three chapters in the new textbook. The FVSU professor said the chapters she contributed contain relevant information needed for an individual to effectively practice veterinary technology.

Samples said she is pleased to know she is regarded as a writer in the veterinary technology field.

“It is a dream come true. I have always wanted to be a writer, first and foremost. It’s something I wanted to do since I was a child,” Samples said.

The next edition of the textbook is scheduled for 2024. Samples is already signed up to repeat her role as co-editor and author. In the meantime, she is in the process of writing projects including a veterinary technology laboratory manual.

For more information about the textbook, contact Samples or McCommon at (478) 825-6424 or e-mail or