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Student Blog - Amelia, BTEC Level 3 in Animal Management (Behaviour and Welfare)

13 Mar 2021 | College

"Riseholme college has amazing facilities: fully equipped labs with skeletons and microscopes, its’ own animal unit on campus, and a dog grooming centre just down the road. After discovering this, it was almost inevitable that Riseholme was the best place for me, and despite the fact it meant moving away from all of my friends, it was the best decision I ever made."

Hi, I am Amelia McGinty and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here studying my level 3 Animal management course with behaviour and welfare. The behaviour and welfare stream has allowed me to gain a broad understanding surrounding not only animal nursing, but their biology, genetics and breeding etc. Studying a wide variety of topics has enabled me to gain an insight into different specialised areas. This has helped me to decide where I would like to tailor my knowledge to as part of my further study in the future.

This course appealed to me because it consists of not just theory, but practical lessons too. I loved this way of learning because it allowed me to take the knowledge I gained from the classroom to the next level, by applying it to real life animal experiments and situations. Practical lessons vary massively, from dissecting sheep’s hearts in Biology, to working hands on with the animals on the animal unit in husbandry. All practical lessons helped me to gain real life experience -which has proven very useful- when applying to university or any roles within the animal industry. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy learning about the animals themselves, the behavioural and welfare side of the course was very interesting to. It allowed me to think in greater depth about certain morals and ethics concerning our animals and look at how and why different animals interact with us humans. Investigating the animal industry from my own point of view meant that I was able to engage in class debates and discussions, raise further questions and take my knowledge to the next level.

After achieving 10 GCSEs, I presumed that Sixth Form life was the only way forward for me and it was almost glued into my head that studying A levels was what I should do next. Conversely, my school’s choices became so limited and I wanted to study a subject that I felt passionate and genuinely invested in. When I looked around Riseholme college, it majorly stood out to me and being able to study a subject that held such high levels of interest for me was strongly appealing. Riseholme college has amazing facilities: fully equipped labs with skeletons and microscopes, its’ own animal unit on campus, and a dog grooming centre just down the road. After discovering this, it was almost inevitable that Riseholme was the best place for me, and despite the fact it meant moving away from all of my friends, it was the best decision I ever made.

College provides such a different experience from school. We are all treated as equals and everyone shows so much more respect for one another because of this. Our course tutors allow us to call them by their first names and this means that everyone feels much more relaxed and valued. I believe this is beneficial because it means that we were able to develop much closer, friendlier relationships with our lecturers and therefore, people weren’t afraid to get involved and ask questions. The teachers know you more as an individual and so you can work together to achieve your goals and develop your knowledge. Not only this though, College also allows you to develop your skills when working individually to. There is much more free time than at school and you are in control of your study. This reflects more of a University experience and helps us prepare for the real world.

My favourite part of the course has got to be the practical lessons. My grooming lessons were so interesting and engaging – I even got to practise on my friends’ dog! Biology practical lessons also consist of dissections and experiments. We did rat dissections, pig hearts and sheep eyes! This allowed me to deepen my understanding on the anatomy of organisms and develop my knowledge on the skeletal and musculoskeletal system, instead of reading it out of a textbook.

For me, this course has really helped me know where I want to be in the future. Not only has it confirmed to me that my true passions lie in the animal industry, it has given me a taster of so many different parts of the industry. This course has shown me how much I love learning and working with animals and as part of it, I have even been privileged enough to gain experience in a Veterinary clinic. This confirmed my aspirations and ambitions; I would love to work within the Veterinary industry itself. The possibilities are endless. I hope I can work my way up through the practise, from working with and operating on animals as a veterinary nurse, to potentially becoming practice manager. There may even be an opportunity in the future to take my skills overseas and work on giving all animals an equal chance to a better healthier welfare.

Studying at Riseholme has enlightened me so much and shown me that anything is possible. It is important to remember that there are a number of opportunities that can arise from studying a a course like this and just because you’re studying animals doesn’t mean you should feel restricted with your aspirations and career goals. The course even consists of a business unit and allows you to develop managerial skills, leadership skills and learn about the working world itself. We have even been on school trips to zoos and the famous cruft dog shows. I think it’s important to approach situations with an open mind and be willing to try. Riseholme may be the perfect place for you and you should follow your true ambitions, no matter what anyone else is doing.

My favourite facilities as Riseholme college must be the animal unit and the laboratory. The animal unit has such a diverse range of species like: marmosets, blue tongued skint, alpacas, cus cus and royal pythons. Handling such a wide variety of species has allowed me to increase my confidence as an individual and given me an amazing taste of life as a veterinary nurse.

The laboratory is better than any I have ever worked in before and there is so much equipment in order to gain accurate results in experiments.

Not only are the learning facilities absolutely incredible, being on campus is amazing. I really enjoy spending time at Riseholme because of its’ community feel. There are lots of spaces to relax, study and socialise. I have made extraordinary friends for life at Riseholme, with people from all over the County. The atmosphere on campus is by far the best and I am gutted that I am spending so much time learning online at the moment, due to circumstances.

I am lucky enough to have access to the free transport that Riseholme provides for many of its’ students. I know this isn’t available to many sixth forms in the area, but I am able to catch a bus to and from college. I find it extremely helpful when travelling to and from college, because everyone is so lovely and it has allowed me to become even more independent. It even provided me with yet another opportunity to make more friends, transporting to and from college.

If anyone is considering studying a course at Riseholme college – go for it – you will be surprised. My experience here has been much better than I expected and despite the big jump from school life to college life, I cannot recommend it enough. Everyone is so supportive, lovely and welcoming and Riseholme has made it possible for me to follow my career path of dreams.

Applications for September 2021 are still open, why not check out our Animal Management courses today.

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