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Veterinary future looks bright for past student

Olivia WellsAccess to HE student, Olivia Wells, talks about her experience studying towards a future in veterinary science.

What inspired you to study your access to HE subject?

“I was fortunate enough to be able to work in London 2012 for the Belgium equestrian team and spent a lot of my time around vets; deep down I knew that A-levels weren’t for me and I was searching for a route that would suit my learning. As a mature student it was important that I could keep working as well as making time for studying.

“I saw that some of the veterinary medicine courses accepted access to HE Science in their entry requirements so I decided to take this route with Lincoln College and was lucky enough to gain a place start in the year of 2014/15.

“I felt that the structure of the course really suited me in the way they taught the science, it really broke it down and I came away actually understanding what I had been taught… even chemistry!”

How did your course prepare you for university and working life?

“My studies prepared me for university in so many different ways; I improved my ability to study for longer, to have knowledge of the basic concepts I would need for my veterinary degree, organisation skills, as well as also helping me gain a place at my university.

“For me, it wasn’t just about the science I learned but also all the support with things like personal statements and filling out UCAS applications that we received from the Lincoln College team.

“I think that my Access to HE course fundamentally taught me how to solve problems and meet targets, and to not be ashamed to ask for help. It’s okay to not understand and enjoy every part of a course, the things that you find easy, others will find difficult and so forth.

“Being able to overcome challenges with the support of the teachers and fellow students builds your confidence as well as learning something new which can be so rewarding!”

What does your future hold?

“I still have a very long way to go and my learning styles keep on improving all the time; I have so many different things to aim towards, from my dream job to improving on my last exam, and changing the way I revise for particular units. It’s wonderful how many opportunities are opened up; I enjoy having a variety of goals which could be for next week or ten years away! 

“I am hoping to be a fully qualified vet by the year 2020! From there I will look at going into sport equine veterinary practice; I am really passionate about being a vet.”

What would your advice be to other mature students?

“I think that being mature and going back into education can be very daunting and also intimidating. The Access to HE course has given me an opportunity to improve my education and channel my efforts into something that I am very passionate about.

“Of course there are ups and downs and often it can feel difficult, but all the guidance is there and it is possible!

“I think it gives a real sense of achievement, working through something new (especially when it comes to science). I would advise anybody who has enough determination to go for it; I wouldn’t change the position I am in now for the world.

“There’s so much support available, not just from teachers, but also from your fellow students; not only did I achieve fantastic results and gain my place at a university even better, I made some amazing lifetime friends who are also doing incredibly well on their university journeys!”

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