Student blog - Emily Hancock, BSc Bioveterinary Science, Year 3


Hi, my name is Emily and I’m currently in my third year of BSc Bioveterinary Science here at Hartpury University. I originally chose this degree as a gateway for veterinary medicine, which is something I still have ambition to do. However, thanks to my inspiring lecturers and Programme Manager Alison, I’ve also been introduced to the exciting world of research.

I’m currently working on my dissertation (an applied research project) which has really developed my ability to critique scientific literature. Having the freedom to choose my own topic has enabled me to explore the areas of veterinary science that interest me – which currently is equine neurology! My supervisor, Aisling, has played an integral part in my progress and given me so much support.

I love the family vibe at Hartpury. I have a great rapport with my lecturers and know them as friends who I can talk to – academic or non-academic. They’re lovely people and it’s such a 1:1 experience. This makes it so easy to contribute in lectures and to ask about anything I’m unsure on. This also resonates within campus, as all of the Hartpury staff and students are so friendly! Whenever I see my lecturers around campus, they always make the effort to stop and say ‘hello’.

Gaining practical experience
Aside from the research components of my university experience, I’ve also learnt a great deal from my practical sessions, which I mostly had in my first and second year.

In my first year, I would usually have two or three practicals per week, which I always looked forward to the most. My favourite sessions were Thursday morning Anatomy and Physiology dissections – in which the most fascinating specimen we handled (and inflated to its O2 capacity!) was an equine lung.

In my second year, I continued to make the most of Hartpury’s extensive laboratory facilities – particularly in Pathology, where we learnt procedures for biochemical analyses, such as haematology. Being able to see the theory come to life not only enhances my learning, but it also puts me in an advantageous position for securing extracurricular placements in veterinary practices.

My favourite module is Pharmacology. I love looking into, and comparing scientific literature, and thinking about its practical applications. As a degree often sought pre-vet, it’s a great opportunity to understand how many considerations veterinarians factor in when making choices for patients. This spans from a simple vaccination to complex drug-drug protocols for multiple syndromes – it’s totally fascinating and really makes you think!

There’s always something exciting to do on campus
Between lectures and revising in the university study lounge, my friends and I usually grab a coffee from Red & Black café. We often walk down to the equine centre and enjoy watching some of the events – there’s usually something fun going on!

Competition days are my favourite, including the International Hartpury Horse Trials. There’s an amazing atmosphere and it’s incredible to see the big names compete. Having competed at Hartpury myself, in both dressage and showjumping, I’ve felt the buzz in the arenas that have seen riders progress to the top of their sport. It’s all part of the Hartpury experience!

I feel prepared for a job in the veterinary sector
Ideally, I would really like to become a veterinarian. Likewise, I have a real interest in research so could see myself lecturing or solely working within research as a field. This degree had given me the best of both worlds, in that, I feel capable and just to critique scientific literature and make my own opinions on matters. In the same sense, I am also confident in my theoretical and practical ability to work and push myself into a working veterinarian industry, where one has to constantly evolve and adjust.

Develop academically and as a person
To anyone thinking of studying at Hartpury, I’d say to go for it! If it’s facilities and experience you’re after, this is the place to be. Hartpury has a friendly atmosphere, yet is really in tune with current industry and research development. It’s a wonderful place to grow, both as a person and academically!

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