I’ve loved every minute of my course
FdA Applied Animal Management at Bridgwater College
I decided to apply for the Animal Management course at
Bridgwater College as a mature student after meeting the programme director,
who was incredibly friendly and passionate. That meeting, along with seeing the
brilliant facilities, made the decision a no-brainer. The link with Oxford
Brookes University was also a definitely a pull for me when choosing the course
because it adds prestige to the qualification.
The Animal Management Centre at Bridgwater is fantastic,
and contains a huge range of animals, from mice to snakes, spiders to alpacas. We
also have access to the labs, stables and dairy farm which gives us loads of
hands-on experience and great talking points for discussions.
We've been on a number of field trips, including visits
to a deer sanctuary and a wild animal park and, in the second year we are given
the opportunity to take a study tour abroad – it’s likely to be to Costa Rica to study
crocodiles and small primates.
We have lectures on two days a week, which enables me to continue
to work part time. The course is really
well organised and uses innovative learning techniques. Along with the dedicated Higher Education
library at the college, I also access the Oxford Brookes online library for
The lecturers are absolutely fantastic, and their
passion, enthusiasm and energy rub off. The pastoral support is excellent. I
was concerned about how I’d find studying again after such a long break - and
that it would be a big step up - but I’ve really taken to it and absolutely
Although I’m older than most of the other students, we
all get on really well. We meet up regularly and share useful resources with
each other. I’m the higher education representative for the course and have
also taken the lead on developing the college’s Zoological Society, arranging
trips to Monkey World and inviting a wide range of speakers to the college.
Hopefully it will continue once I leave, and can be the legacy I leave to the
As part of the course we have to do 230 hours of work
experience - so I’ve worked with rhinos in a zoo, done enrichment work with
raccoons, and worked at the Wolf Conservation Trust. It has helped me build some
great industry contacts as well as decide exactly what I am interested in doing
in the future. The job market is very competitive, so I am always looking for
ways that will make me stand out and give me the edge once I graduate.
I’ve loved every minute of my course - I can’t wait to
get started on my second year and I’m also hoping to do the ‘top-up’. My long term dream is to work on a reserve in
Africa, starting with volunteering with African Conservation Experience, to combine rescue and rehabilitation work with
project management and research.
to your tutors and library staff to learn about the resources available to you
around your subject
management is important – try to be as organised as possible!