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NWRC's Zoe dream of being a Vet will come true in two years time

01 September 2023
Woman in a baseball cap standing in a barn holding a baby calf. She is wearing glasses and smiling


Zoe McGirr.



What was your previous education before coming to NWRC?

Oakgrove Integrated Primary School and College.

Course studied?

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma Health Studies (Health Science pathway).

Why did you choose NWRC?

The NWRC was actually a very last-minute decision. After flopping the first year of A levels I was worried my dreams of being a vet had been crushed. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to bring my grades up to meet vet school entry requirements. After contacting the NWRC I was offered a place on the Health Science course as a potential alternative route to university.

Tell us a bit more about your course?

The course was taught in the form of lectures by different teaching staff. There were a range of modules that were taught alongside each other. Modules included Anatomy and Physiology, principles of safe practice, human lifespan and development, and public health. Each module was assessed using a series of essays/ coursework. These were completed independently and then submitted online.

What have you enjoyed most about your time at College?

I enjoyed this course and the teaching provided. I think it is a great alternative way to access university. A Levels did not work for me and I struggled with end-of-year examinations. At college, the examination was in the form of coursework. This worked better for my learning style and thus I was able to excel. I found the workload manageable and I was able to juggle college and a part-time job. The college also helped to prepare me for university as it introduced me to lecture-style teaching and working independently.

What did you do afterwards?

After completing my course at college I went on to study veterinary medicine at the University of Nottingham. I am currently due to start year 5 out of 6. In order to qualify for a veterinary medicine degree I had to complete an additional preliminary year. At the time of my application, this was only offered by the University of Nottingham with 30 spaces.

Due to the limited spaces, an option I had set as my backup plan was to study veterinary nursing. I was able to apply directly to this and received offers at two universities.

Would you recommend this course to other students?

I enjoyed this course and the teaching provided. I think it is a great alternative way to access university. I felt the college helps to prepare people for university as it introduces lecture-style teaching and independent work. I would recommend this course for students looking to go into the human health profession or veterinary nursing at University.

Students looking to do veterinary medicine should look at the BTEC in Applied Science may be a more appropriate choice. (Students should look at entry requirements and contact universities regarding accepted BTECs).

Zoe mcgirr
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