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Let me first start by introducing myself, hi, I’m Daisy, and I am going into my second year of Zoology. I have a huge passion for animals, which started in my early childhood. I grew up on the Scottish Isles, and we had a smallholding there. I then chose to study animal management at college; after that, I took a year out before coming to university to work instead, to make sure that what I was doing was right for me.  

Why I Chose the University of Chester

I had chosen universities in different locations offering various animal courses, from Zoology to Animal Welfare and Conservation or even Animal Behaviour and Welfare. I hadn’t attended any in-person Open Days before choosing which university to go to as they were too far away, and I was working on the dates they offered. However, I did manage to go to a couple of Virtual Open Days. It was through those in which my decision was made. From my personal experience, I found Chester the most helpful, offering information on the modules taught on their Zoology degree and how they might help me from a disability inclusion point of view.

I also chose Chester because of its location. Chester is only a small city which is nice because it is not as busy as other bigger areas. There were also job prospects for my partner, who did not want to attend university. We visited Chester and felt the area was such a friendly, happy place where we could continue our journey together. There are plenty of places to go on walks and escape reality, but also plenty of areas for shopping. Chester Zoo being ten minutes down the road was also a big pull towards Chester for me!

Why I Chose to Study Zoology

  • Broad study fields –Zoology covers a lot of different aspects of the animal industry, so for me personally, this was a good option because I got to try different study fields and see what career I might like to go into.
  • I didn’t know who I wanted to be or what career I wanted to do – I was unsure as to what study field I might want to enter. The animal industry has many different aspects, from conservation and education to boarding kennels and welfare.
  • Trips –the trips and opportunities offered looked amazing!
  • Tutors –at the time of my decision, I had only spoken to one tutor from Chester and one from another university. All the opportunities I was told I would get a chance at while studying Zoology persuaded me, in addition to how helpful they were in answering my questions.
  • Subject choice –before deciding, I checked all the subject choices of the other courses I was interested in to see what modules were offered in Years 2 and 3. I felt Zoology offered more of the study fields I was interested in then (although I was aware they could change by the time I would be studying them, I thought they might stay around the similar modules I was interested in).
  • Career prospects –after researching, the career prospects for Zoology were study areas I’ve always been interested in.

My Experience So Far at Chester

I have just completed the first year of my Zoology degree, and to say I had an amazing, emotional, and exciting time would be an understatement. I have been on a few trips with the University, one of which was to Chester Zoo; this was amazing as we got to put what we had learnt about animal behaviour into practice, observing and creating ethograms on certain species. This was also prepping us for our assignment in a fun, engaging way. We also got an incredible opportunity to go on a residential field trip for ecology; during this, we carried out a variety of activities, from pond dipping, worm identification and soil PH analysis, to establishing species richness and diversity by identifying invertebrate species, plant species and bird species in certain areas. These field trips gave us invaluable experience and insight into the workplace we could one day work in. Amazing lectures with all different experiences in the animal sciences field also accompanied these. The field trips were also made accessible for students with all different needs; for me, it was wheelchair-accessible facilities and activities, the tutors understood my limitations, and all were happy to give an extra hand when needed!

I’m looking forward to starting my second year at Chester. Still, in the meantime, I’ll be keeping myself busy by working at a zoo doing a placement organised by the University (one of many opportunities the Department of Biological Sciences students have been offered) and helping as a student ambassador at the Open Days, so get yourself booked as we can’t wait to get to meet you and answer any more questions you may have.

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