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An anatomic pathology resident describes a gross lesion to veterinary students

 An Anatomic Pathology resident explains the significance of a gross lesion to senior veterinary students. Through the Residency and PhD program, veterinary residents make important contributions to the teaching mission of the department.

Anatomic Pathology Residency and PhD Program


 Contact Us


Chad Frank
Anatomic Pathology Residency Program Coordinator & Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Pathology
Phone: (970) 297-5129

Heidi Runge
Academic Support Coordinator for Graduate Studies
Phone: (970) 491-1630


 Helpful Links


ACVP Externship

There is a continuing need for well-trained veterinary pathologists for positions in government, academic, and private sectors. To help fill this need, the American College of Veterinary Pathologists has established a Scholarship Program designed to support externship experiences for veterinary students interested in learning more about activities of veterinary anatomic and clinical pathologists.
Learn more about the Anatomic Pathology Externship at CSU.

Program Highlights

Preparation for American College of Veterinary Pathologists Board Qualification.

Based in the Pathology Section of the state-of-the-art Diagnostic Medicine Center of the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (D-Lab).

Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

Provides diagnostic service for regional veterinarians, the public, and the Veterinary Teaching Hospital (VTH). Accredited by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians.

Offers services in:

  • Bacteriology

  • Chemistry/Toxicology

  • Endocrinology

  • Parasitology

  • Pathology

  • Virology

Resident Trainee Life

Eight veterinary pathologists, all ACVP diplomates, conduct and supervise pathology section activities.

Residency activities are focused on VTH necropsy and surgical pathology cases and also includes Diagnostic Laboratory submissions from outside clinics that totals:

  • Approximately 1,900 necropsies per year.

  • Approximately 34,000 surgical pathology cases per year.

The Pathology Section of the Diagnostic Laboratory has a case load that includes the common domestic companion and livestock species as well as exotic and wildlife species. Check out the Pathology statistics from the Diagnostic Lab Annual Report​​.

The Research Component

Graduate research training utilizes modern scientific methodology and encourages independent thought with an emphasis on experimental design, data interpretation, and development of written and oral communication skills.

Research opportunities include, but are not limited to;

  • Arthropod-borne Infectious Disease

  • Bacterial and Viral Pathogenesis

  • Epidemiology of Natural Diseases

  • Immunoparasitology

  • Inherited Metabolic Disease

  • Malarial Molecular Biology and Immunology

  • Mycobacterial Diseases

  • Oncology

  • Retrovirus Pathogenesis/Therapy

  • Toxicology

  • Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies

  • Vector Biology

Students will begin investigations of prospective laboratories in which to conduct their research beginning in year 1. Years 2-3 are structured to provide time for increasing research activities and coursework required for culmination of the graduate degree. Graduate work towards a PhD typically continues after year 3 after which time stipends are funded by mentor laboratories, independent funding obtained during years 2-3, or via a departmental T32 post-DVM PhD Training Grant.

Check out our Current Residents page!

Additional Educational Opportunities

Seminars and Conferences

  • Weekly research seminars.

  • Weekly microscopy seminars ​attended by department faculty pathologists, both anatomic and clinical pathology cases are presented and interpreted by pathology trainees in preparation for the ACVP board examination. This seminar serves as a vehicle for bringing together laboratory and applied pathologists for discussion of case material.

  • Weekly Anatomic Pathology Conferences are held throughout the year to serve the needs of pathologists and pathology trainees engaged in diagnostic pathology. Conducted in the necropsy laboratory and is presented by the pathology trainee on duty for the week, cases are presented as preserved tissues or in situ abnormalities captured by video. Video microscopy is also available for discussion of cases.

Trainee Responsibilities in the Necropsy Lab

  • Learning and refining necropsy techniques.

  • Seeking and describing macroscopic alterations.

  • Tissue sampling and preparation for further study.

  • Interpretation of histopathologic alterations.

  • Preparation of necropsy reports.

  • Reporting and discussion of results with submitting practitioners.

Trainee Responsibilities in Surgical Pathology Lab

  • Receiving and preparing samples for processing.

  • Description and interpretation of histologic alterations.

  • Preparation of a surgical pathology reports.

  • Reporting and discussion of results with submitting practitioners.

These activities are performed under the supervision of a faculty pathologist assigned to that duty.

Surgical pathology slides are read by the anatomic pathology trainees and faculty pathologists in a microscopy facility adjacent to the Clinical Pathology Service in the Diagnostic Medicine Center (DMC). This promotes immediate communication between those interpreting cytology specimens and histologic specimens. The location of the DMC adjacent to the VTH also serves to promote direct contact between clinicians and pathologists on a frequent basis.

Pathology Trainees frequently have opportunities to prepare publications in collaboration with D-Lab and VTH staff and faculty. Such activity provides valuable experience in critical writing and interpretation as well as participation in a collaborative effort.

Teaching Experience

The Pathology Section of the D-Lab also provides training for Professional Veterinary Medicine (PVM) students.

  • Six to nine PVM students per week are assigned to the necropsy laboratory as part of the Postmortem Investigation Practicum course.

    • A core 2 week rotation.

    • Students learn necropsy technique, description, interpretation and tissue sampling strategies for utilizing D-Lab resources.

    • Pathology Trainees participate along with the supervising faculty pathologist.

  • Third year PVM students also have necropsy laboratory assignments in order to begin learning necropsy technique.

  • Pathology Trainees also have the opportunity to participate in pathology laboratories for 2nd Year PVM students.


The State-of-the-art CSU Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory was completed in 2009 and is comprised of eleven primary laboratory sections: bacteriology/mycology, virology, molecular biology, transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, Select Agents and foreign animal diseases (BSL3), chemistry/toxicology, parasitology, clinical pathology, necropsy, biopsy and histopathology. The necropsy laboratory is fully equipped for investigation of animal diseases and includes a 2,000 square feet BSL3 space, 1,200 square feet high BSL2 necropsy facility, and a 2,680 square feet main necropsy floor.  The CSU VDL is fully accredited (full service, all species) by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD) and is a National Animal Health Laboratory Network (NAHLN) core laboratory.
Equipment/resources used for residency training - two multi-headed microscopes with capabilities to project high quality real-time images onto an HD television, a 1080p HD ceiling visualizer presentation system for gross necropsy rounds, a digital slide scanner, a single lens reflex camera for photographing gross lesions, and a diverse collection of pathology textbooks and histopathology slide sets.   

How to Apply

Visit our Application Procedures page for detailed instructions.

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Fort Collins, Colorado 80523-1682

(970) 491-6144

(970) 491-0603