This programme will equip you with the knowledge and skills which are required by organisations such as animal charities, welfare organisations, education and research establishments and government bodies.
Possible careers include animal health and welfare officers, laboratory and field research technicians, zoo education officers, researchers and education. Further study can lead to accreditation as an animal behaviour therapist or specialist in the fields of behaviour, welfare or conservation.
Past students have gone onto successful careers working at the RSPCA, Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Guide Dogs for the Blind, the Dogs Trust, Battersea Dogs Home, Cats Protection League, Sequani, Brinsbury College, and Customs and Excise. In addition students have also progressed to postgraduate programmes at the University of Exeter and the University of Lincoln.
Graduate Profile: Tom Lawton
Tom is a Wildlife Ranger in Australia
What I do
I currently work for the Queensland State Government in Australia for the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection. My role is wildlife ranger for the Northern Region wildlife management unit including the management of protected, native wildlife species throughout North Queensland, mostly crocodile and cassowary management. Crocodile management involves population surveys and monitoring, assessments and the capture and removal of crocodiles of concern. We are currently conducting a joint research project with the University of Queensland where we are telemetry tracking Southern Cassowaries and releasing subadult birds from our rehabilitation centre with radio telemetry trackers.
Getting a start in the industry
I have always been interested in wildlife, especially reptiles. I travelled to Australia and volunteered at Australia Zoo. I knew then that I wanted to build a career working within crocodile management. When I returned to the UK I realised that if I wanted to make a real go of my ambition I needed to go to uni and get a degree. I graduated from Hartpury in 2007 and migrated to Australia. I was sponsored by Australia Zoo as a crocodile research assistant and I worked with a variety of native Australian wildlife. I went on two crocodile research trips to the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Far North Queensland where we caught estuarine crocodiles and implanted acoustic radio transmitters and satellite trackers to monitor their seasonal movements and behaviour patterns. I left Australia Zoo for the North Queensland wildlife management unit.
Why I chose Hartpury
My student experiences at Hartpury were fantastic. The campus is small, which I found to be a great thing. It made my uni experience a lot more personal. Gloucester is a great place for a student to be based and the surrounding countryside is beautiful. I made some great mates there who I still keep in touch with. Hartpury provided me with opportunities that other universities could not: personalised study programmes, small lecture groups which allowed one to one teaching opportunities. My learning experience has allowed me to get to where I am today. It has opened doors and shown me the importance of research and report writing, elements I use daily in my current role. My lecturers were great and supportive of my unusual career path and allowed me to base some of my course work around Australian conservation and crocodiles.
Working in conservation
My career within the conservation/wildlife management industry will never make me millions of dollars, but being able to do a job I love and am passionate about compensates for that. If you’re honestly passionate about conserving wildlife I suggest that you take a look at where and what you want to be in ten years’ time. I did that exact thing and I am lucky enough to be doing what I pictured ten years ago.