"My placement has had a hugely positive impact on my university experience, as it taught me to have more confidence in my ability to tackle challenges. I also developed key skills which are proving essential in my final year studies."
CourseVeterinary Biosciences BSc (Hons)
Placement companyUniversity of Saskatchewan
I undertook an eight-month placement as a trainee at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada. I had a variety of roles and was able to immerse myself in many different areas of work. Each day was different so it never got boring.
Most days started with attending rounds in the veterinary clinic, then I would go to my office to work on some of my written projects, which ranged from literature reviews on different topics to making research posters/presentations. Towards the end of my placement I was asked to collect nasal samples from horses that entered the veterinary clinic throughout the day. Once a week I would attend journal club with the veterinary interns to discuss new research and analyse the articles and their application in the clinic. For one week each month we went out to various properties to take blood samples from horses for the main project I worked on.
My experience in three words...
Incredible, insightful, unforgettable.
Adjusting to a new schedule
My placement allowed for flexibility with working hours which was good as rounds started at 8am and cases could come in at any time. As long as I met deadlines, I could choose my hours. However, to stay on top of my projects I made sure I was in my office between 8am and 4pm, so I could concentrate and give work my full attention. It took a bit of adjustment but I settled into the routine and it got a lot easier.
Life back at Surrey
My placement has had a hugely positive impact on my university experience, as it taught me to have more confidence in my ability to tackle challenges. At first, I did feel a little lost because it had been a while since I’d last interacted with the course content, however after a couple of weeks I was back into the routine and remembered the important information and concepts.
My studies benefited too because being on placement reinforced my knowledge of some key concepts. Mainly it allowed me to immerse myself in the workplace and really challenge myself. I developed key skills such as time management, academic writing and presenting, which are proving essential in my final year studies.
Don’t let fear of something new stop you. It will be scary at first, but it does get easier and will benefit you massively. And take advantage of every social event available.
Find out more about our Veterinary Biosciences BSc.