SRU students become certified in animal-assisted crisis response


Nov. 19, 2021

Four Slippery Rock University students earned national certification through HOPE Animal-Assisted Crisis Response, joining an elite team of approximately 300 people in the U.S. who are certified to respond to crises and disasters by providing animal-assisted comfort and support to people impacted.

The students include Taylor Gunn, a senior social work major from Tarentum; Ryleigh King, a junior social work major from New Castle; Rylie Patterson, a senior exercise science major from Cheswick; and Sherry Rigel, a junior social work major from New Castle. They will now be deployed upon request with Yvonne Eaton-Stull, associate professor of public health and social work; Deborah Hutchins, associate professor of parks, conservation and recreational therapy; and their crisis response dogs, Chevy and Mily. The team will supervise and support crisis response dog teams while working to meet the needs of the requesting agencies.