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By studying Veterinary Medicine I will be able to fulfil my desire to work closely with both people and animals. It will also consolidate my knowledge of science, allowing it to grow further. I am aware of the challenges posed by this vocation, but I feel that there is great satisfaction to be gained from working in animal welfare. The work experience that I have completed and enjoyed has further convinced me that Veterinary Medicine is a progressive profession with new developments constantly being made that will provide lifelong interest.
I have spent a total of five weeks at five veterinary practices, covering small animals, large animals, equine and exotic animals. At these practices I was allowed to watch operations, was able to assist in some of the pre-operative procedures and go on farm visits.
I was able to learn about milking and the various aspects of dairy and poultry farming during my two weeks at Mill Farm. A week of lambing, several days on a pig farm and a week at a racing stable provided very worthwhile close contact with a variety of animals. From this work I have gained a clear understanding of the farmer's point of view; e.g. the difficulties many farmers face in maintaining a viable business whilst meeting the mandatory requirements for animal welfare.
At the Veterinary Laboratories Agency I learnt about dealing with samples from post mortem and histology. I have spent a day at an abattoir and for 10 months I have volunteered at the Blue Cross. I have also attended the Vetsix and Vetsim courses, gaining a Marine Mammal Medic certificate.
Apart from my studies, I pursue many other interests. In the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme I have achieved Bronze and Silver Awards and am currently finishing the Gold. I am also a Millennium Volunteer, having completed 100 hours voluntary work in August 2003 (BTCV conservation work). Now I am working towards a 200 hour goal.
I am a dedicated sportswoman and particularly enjoy horse riding, skiing and karate. In the latter I soon hope to obtain my green belt.
Music is also a great passion for me. I play the flute and am working towards Grade 6. I am lead flute in the school's Concert Band and am the Music Coordinator for my house, organising practices and encouraging younger students to participate in the yearly competition.
This year I have been appointed a member of the school's sixth form council with specific duties to represent Year 9, bringing student concerns to the attention of staff. This has been a good way of improving my team working skills. I also help to run Amnesty International/Youth Action as human rights is something I feel strongly about. I support the environmental club as well, having helped to set up a recycling campaign. My keen interest in reading and English has inspired my involvement in the school Newsletter, which enables me to unleash my more creative side.
All these activities are helping me to develop my interpersonal skills and I am constantly striving to improve in communication, tactfulness, patience and maturity - qualities that I believe are vital for a career in veterinary medicine. Adaptability and open-mindedness are two of my strengths. I have previously abroad, which has given me flexibility and appreciation of different cultures, as well as a love of travel. I anticipate going to university as an opportunity to further expand my learning, my horizons, to meet colleagues and to become involved.