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Cowan's off-court secret talent is for the dogs

Gwyn Cowan, volleyball player and dog lover
5b9a9349da94dGwyn Cowan, volleyball player and dog lover
Gwyn Cowan, volleyball player and dog lover

Gwyn Cowan’s secret is out.

During the 2018 Broken Arrow Athletic Leadership Conference this summer, student-athletes were instructed to introduce themselves to someone they did not know. One of the “get-to-know-you icebreaker questions was “What is a talent most people don’t know you have?”

Cowan’s secret talent was the talk of the opening session. As word spread about what many had newly-discovered, when Cowan was around, classmates tended to request a sampling.  

“My friends in leadership class ask me to do it all the time,” said Cowan, the six-foot-tall middle blocker for the Lady Tiger volleyball team obliges.

Listen to Gwen's Secret TalentYes, that is her and not your neighbor's Schnauzer.

Cowan cannot trace back to a time when she first barked like a dog or how she even learned the skill. There is no connection between her not-so-secret talent and her career dream of becoming a veterinarian,either. 

Through Broken Arrow High School’s Career Exploration Program, Cowan is doing an internship with Good Shepherd Veterinary Clinic two hours each morning.

“I really like taking care of animals and stuff,” said the owner of two donkeys and two dogs. “I’ve learned never be afraid of the dogs, because if you’re afraid then they’re going to be more scared there is a better chance they could bite.

“Right now, I’m still getting used to where everything is. I have helped hold a couple of dogs when they are doing tests or taking blood. I’ll eventually start following around a vet when they do surgeries. It’s still really cool. I like the environment, and as I do more at the internship it seems like something that I could do the rest of my life.”

What she won’t be doing after the 2018 volleyball season ends is playing competitive volleyball any longer.

“I thought about doing volleyball in college and was going through the recruiting process, but I really want school to be my number one focus,” Cowan said. “It’s hard, because I’m going to miss volleyball. It’s sad. I don’t want it to be my last season, but I feel it will be best for me if I just focus on school.”

Cowan is “leaning” toward Oklahoma State University because of its veterinary program. Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah, also is an option. She is looking into that school’s science programs to see if they would fall in line with helping her eventually get into vet school.

A career as a veterinarian would be perfect for Cowan, after all, it’s no secret that she can speak the language of many of her future patients.