Case Study: Eliza Clifford

Courses undertaken at The College of Animal Welfare

Level 3 Extended Diploma in Animal Management (2013 Intake)

Eliza with a racoon on her shoulderWhen Eliza first applied to join The College of Animal Welfare she knew that she wanted to work with animals, and most probably, train to become a veterinary nurse.

After speaking to tutors about the animal care qualifications on offer, Eliza decided to apply for the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Animal Management course. This course would give her a comprehensive knowledge of animal management and allow her to experience a range of work placement in the animal industry. Successful completion of the Level 3 Animal Management programme would also increase Eliza’s chances of getting a place on the Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing course afterwards.

We caught up with Eliza and asked her to share some of her experiences about her time at College, in particularly the Level 3 Diploma in Animal Management course…

Did you have any past qualifications or experiences that helped you on the course?

I have had numerous pets over the years (dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters) which meant I had some experience with these species. I also used to help look after horses when I was younger, from cleaning them out to riding them; this gave me a good start when I did some work experience with other horses.

Which parts of the course did you enjoyed the most?

The work experience! The work placements have helped a lot with assignments and progress; they’ve all given me such valuable skills in working with animals and people (who are just as important!). I enjoyed learning something new at each placement and working with a variety of animals.

The practical side of units! These have also furthered my experience with animals, and helped me learn so much more easily. They are challenging but also very useful in the working environment.

Most of the units are also enjoyable, especially some of the assignments set were fun to lie out and create.

Which parts of the course did you find the most challenging?

Working long hours. Working with animals never really has set times for things, and it can be challenging settling into new placements sometimes. The hours can be long and you are also constantly on your feet.

A lot of assignments are also quite long, and some are challenging from the amount of information needing to be found and placed in the assignment. Making a good routine helps you to your plan time better and stay on top of the work load.

Can you tell us what your plans are for the future?

I am planning on staying at The College of Animal Welfare and progressing onto the Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary nursing course.

I read over the information leaflets and thought this would suit me. My tutors have helped me with selecting courses; they listed multiple options and the main points of each, how often you do work experience during the course, length of time and costs.

Was there any information, advice and guidance you received which helped you in a particular way?

When I originally applied to study a course at The College of Animal Welfare, I applied for the Level 2 Diploma in Animal Care. After discussing my options with tutors prior to starting I decided to undertake the Level 3 Diploma in Animal Management. The level 3 qualification would increase my chances of getting a place on the Level 3 Diploma course in Veterinary Nursing afterwards as the selection panel can see that I am already working at that level.

I also received some financial/transport help, as I live about 40-50 minute drive away from college, meaning it was easier to get public transport.

What advice do you have for someone looking to do this course?

Look at what you need to help with your future! Then select the course.

Plan your time; the course is time consuming and there is a lot of work to be done.

When doing work experience try to go to as many different places as possible and experience a range of different types of work. Even if you know what you want to do after the course, you could change your mind or have a different second choice of work.

And lastly; enjoy yourself. You have two years of work ahead but, I promise, it is worth it!

Thinking about undertaking an animal care qualification? Find out how…