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Oklahoma State University

Avian, Exotics and Zoo Medicine Faculty and Staff


João Brandão, LMV, MS, Dipl. ECZM (Avian)

joao brandao

Dr. João Brandão, Assistant Professor of Zoological Medicine at the Oklahoma State University earned his veterinary degree from the University of Tras-os-Montes e Alto Dourvo in Vila Real, Portugal. He completed exotic animal medicine and zoological medicine internships at the Great Western Referrals (Swindon, UK), Tufts University (North Grafton, MA), and the University of Georgia (Athens, GA). Brandão completed a three year zoological medicine residency and Master of Science degree in Veterinary Clinical Sciences at the Louisiana State University. He became a diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine (Avian) in 2018. View Dr. Brandao's publications.

Nicola Di Girolamo, DMV, MSc (EBHC), GP Cert (ExAP), PhD, DECZM (Herp)

nicola di girolamo

Dr. Di Girolamo is an associate professor in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at OSU’s Veterinary Medical Hospital. Originally from Rome, Italy, he earned his DMV (DVM equivalent) and a Ph.D. in Veterinary Sciences from the University of Bologna in Italy. Di Girolamo is also a diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine (Herpetology). His research interests range from diagnostic techniques in exotics to the application of evidence-based practice and meta-research in veterinary medicine.

Dr. Di Girolamo comes to OSU from the Tai Wai Small Animal and Exotic Hospital located in Sha Tin, Hong Kong. View Dr. Di Girolamo's publications.


Kelsea Studer, DVM

kelsea studer

Oiginally from Dayton, Ohio, Studer earned a dual bachelor’s degree in zoology and environmental science from Miami University and her DVM degree from Lincoln Memorial University. She was part of LMU’s College of Veterinary Medicine’s inaugural class. Studer’s research interests are emergency and critical care and analgesia (pain management) of exotic animals.

While Studer was in veterinary school, she founded an exotic animal rescue and helped foster and rehome various animals, from rabbits, to parrots, to potbellied pigs. Her favorite exotic pet is the rat and at one point, she owned five at once.

Studer is a runner and has run several marathons, including the Boston Marathon.

View previous interns

Veterinary Technician

Ian Kanda, RVT, VTS (Exotic Companion Animal)

ian kanda

Ian is a Veterinary Technician in the Zoological Medicine service at Oklahoma State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. Originally from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, he earned a Diploma of Animal Health Technology from Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and is a veterinary technician specialist in clinical practice for exotic companion animals. His research interests include hematology and parasitology of exotic pets and wildlife, wildlife conservation, advancements in captive husbandry, and in clinical procedures for minute patients.

In his spare time, Ian enjoys nature--looking for reptiles and amphibians, bird watching and hiking--especially if he is collecting data for conservation measures.