28 Apr 2021

Jodie Daniel, BSc Animal Behaviour and Welfare student blog

“My goal is to make a big difference and have an impact on the world.”

Hi! My name’s Jodie and I’m a second-year BSc Animal Behaviour and Welfare student at Hartpury University.

My Hartpury day

On an average day, I like to get up early at around 8am (although not after a student night!) to go for a morning run or a workout before my lectures begin.

After doing exercise, I definitely feel prepared to log onto my laptop for my lectures or assignments. I like to get ready, eat a healthy breakfast, and sit down with my friends in our house to begin our online lectures. On Tuesdays and Fridays, I go in for lectures, which is very exciting. I love seeing our beautiful campus!

Excited for my future career

My current modules are Ethics and Welfare, Behaviour Evolutionary Ecology, Companion Animal Behaviour and Training, Field Course and Undergraduate Research Process.

My favourite module this semester is Behaviour Evolutionary Ecology. The lecturers share really interesting personal experiences which make me super excited for my future to do some of the amazing things they have done.

Also, the content is really interactive and fun to learn. We’re learning lots about different relationships animals have with each other and with the places they live.

Experiencing wildlife

We have weekly practical sessions. One of my favourites was setting up cameras around Hartpury campus to capture the exciting wildlife that we don’t usually see.

We can see which animals are visiting where the most, and then develop these areas so that they’re suitable for a wider variety of animals too.

Explaining the theory through practicals

I also enjoyed my first-year Biology practicals. We did regular dissections exploring different things each week, like hearts, lungs, and eyes, which gave me practical experience and taught me new skills. It’s also helpful to prepare for potential future careers within labs.

Doing the practicals, alongside the theory, helps me to gain a hands-on approach to explain and explore the evidence. I find learning this way much more effective.

I’m very excited to go on a trip to Wales for my Field Course module, to research wildlife in their natural habitats.

I’m also looking forward to working at a farm park over the summer. I’ll get additional hands-on experience with a wide range of animals such as llamas, goats and pigs, feeding and caring for them.

My social life

I play hockey for the Hartpury ladies team and it’s one of my favourite experiences at Hartpury so far. We played an undefeated season and won the league. We also have the best celebrations and socials. Joining a team or club is a great way to make friends and settle into life at Hartpury. I recommend getting involved in as much as you can!

To relax on campus, me and my friends often spend time in Legends bar. It’s a really nice space to unwind after a busy day. We also go to the uni study lounge, which is next door to Legends. It’s the perfect space to be comfortable on the bean bags and work on group projects together.

Giraffe on safari

My future

I’d love to go into conservation when I graduate and work as a conservationist in Africa, protecting endangered species from poachers. My goal is to make a big difference and have an impact on the world.

Hartpury is providing me with the opportunity to pursue my dream and career choice by putting me in contact with experts in the field and helping me gain practical experiences with placements at local zoo, St James’ City Farm and Cheltenham Animal Shelter.

From the family feel to beautiful sunsets

I love Hartpury because it has such a friendly atmosphere. The lecturers are amazing, so nice and so easy to talk to, and the students are great. It’s like one big happy family.

There’s always something to do. In between lectures, you can grab a drink at Red & Black café or take Ralph, the campus dog for a walk.

The campus is beautiful too. I can never stop taking photos of it, whether it be by the lake or the amazing sunsets.

Studying during a global pandemic

I would never have imagined that a global pandemic would occur during my studies, but here we are. Hartpury is doing everything possible to give us the best experience during these strange times.

The support from the Achievement and Success Centre is brilliant. The wellbeing team are excellent and are always there for a chat. They send ‘Wellbeing Wednesday’ support via email, which helps us all out.

The mix of online lectures and in person lectures was strange at first, but I soon adjusted and now I can attend online lectures in pjs and no one cares.

We’ve still had practicals, such as handling sessions and outdoor fieldwork. It’s a great way to apply our knowledge ready for the future.

Meet Jodie
Jodie’s filmed a short vlog to give you an insight into student life on the BSc Animal Behaviour and Welfare degree at Hartpury University. Hear more about her dream of working in conservation, either in Africa or in a zoo setting in the UK, and how Hartpury is helping her make her dream a reality.

Written By
Jodie Daniel
Female student with laptop
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