An absolute standout on her math team in high school, where she won 17 perfect score ribbons, placed seventh in state competitions, and won six trophies at the national convention, Kylie Abaya was always told to go into computer science or engineering.
Just one more semester away from earning her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, she’s happy she didn’t.
“Being a veterinarian is all I’ve ever wanted to do,” Kylie said. “I’ve always wanted to help give a voice to our companions, who can’t really tell us what they’re experiencing or feeling.”
It didn’t take her long to decide where she would pursue that dream; after a visit to Pullman her senior year of high school she was set on Washington State University.
“WSU was the only school I applied to both for undergrad and vet school because I just knew that this is where I wanted to go,” she said. “My favorite thing about WSU is the community. Everyone is so nice, and I’ve always felt safe in Pullman.”
Born and raised in Hawaii on the island of Oahu, Kylie is a WICHE student and will return to Hawaii to practice for her first few years after graduation. She is also interested in getting certifications in physical rehabilitation and acupuncture.
Kylie’s favorite saying is “if you’re comfortable, you’re not growing.”
“A lot of people are scared to go out of their comfort zones, but it’s how we grow the most as individuals,” Kylie said. “I left the only home I knew as well as most of my family and friends in Hawaii to come to a new state to continue my education, and while it may have been hard at times, in many ways I’ve never been happier or felt more fulfilled in life.”
Fun Fact: Here in Washington, Kylie has an 8-year-old guinea pig named Milkshake.