University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, 2012
Dr. Helgen was born in Lexington, Kentucky, but raised in Greensboro, North Carolina. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Emory University in Atlanta, GA. After spending most of her life down south, Dr. Helgen moved to the Midwest to attend veterinary school at the University of Illinois. She completed her DVM degree with high honors in 2012, and now considers herself an Illini for life. During her time in veterinary school, Dr. Helgen served as the AAHA student chapter president and was active in the internal medicine club, surgery club, and a member of the Phi Zeta Honor Society. Dr. Helgen joined the team at Capitol Illini following veterinary school graduation and now calls central Illinois her home. Dr. Helgen, her husband Eric, and their two yellow labs Hank and Barley live south of Springfield, where Eric farms with his family. In her free time, she enjoys traveling to visit family, spending time on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, cooking, and cheering for the Cardinals and the Illini. Dr. Helgen is Treasurer of the Central Illinois Veterinary Medical Association and enjoys this opportunity to contribute to her local veterinary community.
Dr. Helgen has a special interest in cardiology and has spent time training in cardiac ultrasounds (echocardiography) and EKGs to help diagnose and manage cardiac disease in both dogs and cats. She also enjoys surgery, dentistry, and internal medicine.