The countryside has become an area I wouldn’t like to be without and has presented me with many opportunities. I have been fortunate enough to live in the South West’s countryside all my life and have had many opportunities to work on local farms and help with the care of wildlife.
Seeing what the countryside has to offer in relation to landscape and wildlife, my passion has driven me to pursue a career in conservation. I am in the process of finishing my first year at the College’s Cannington Centre. I am studying a Foundation Degree in Countryside Management and work alongside other students studying Foundation Degrees in Animal Management and Animal Conservation.
I have always had a fascination for the natural world and have always had an interest to learn more about our counties landscape and wildlife. I previously studied a Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Countryside while living in North Devon and on completion researched opportunities for progression. I visited Cannington to look at the higher education opportunities they offered and thoroughly liked what I saw.
While undertaking work experience, many of the individuals I met in well-respected roles recommended I went on to study a Degree. I wanted to do this not just for the likeliness of future employment opportunities, but because I wanted to learn in more detail about the sector as a whole and enhance my subject knowledge narrowing down a specialist area to pursue as a career.
My time at Cannington has involved learning new viewpoints and aspects of subjects I haven’t studied before and recapping on information I learnt at Level 3 but in more detail. We have also been able to practice hands-on practical skills in the College’s workshops and land, go on a range of site visits and also taken up training opportunities in the use of machinery. These opportunities have helped me get my foot in the door when looking for work experience opportunities, which has paid off as I have managed to secure part-time employment.
The course has also been great as it has introduced me to people with similar interests, it’s been good fun working and learning alongside them. I have also narrowed down my interests and am leaning towards following a career in freshwater work and wetland sites.
Cannington Center offers a range of land-based education; courses offered include animal care and conservation, agriculture, arboriculture, countryside management, equine studies, fish management, floristry, horticulture and sports turf. The courses are well suited for anyone with similar interests or plans to work in conservation.
I hope that if you are unsure of your next step in your career plan within any aspect of conservation, or need to start learning at a beginner level or even plan to make a complete change to your career, that I have given you an insight to what Bridgwater College’s Cannington Centre can provide, and incentive to visit or see what course could suit you, as it is a choice I haven’t regretted.
If you would like to know more about studying a course in countryside or any other in the land-based industries, talk to a member of the Bridgwater College Information and Guidance team on 01278 441234.