Veterinary science student Marcus Yule was recently awarded the Lawson Robinson Hawke's Bay A&P Scholarship at this year's Primary Sector Awards.
He chats to Mark Story about the graft and challenge of the vocation.
Give us an idea of what sort of boost the scholarship offers your study and future career.
As part of the of vet degree we are required to complete a number of weeks gaining practical experience in vet clinics. Travel to and from clinics as well as accommodation during these placements is self-funded. This scholarship will help to cover my travel costs, particularly to clinics further afield than my local area. Part of the scholarship will also be put towards my course fees.
What area of veterinary science are you hoping to specialise in once graduated?
I initially plan on working in a mixed practice with both production and companion animals. However, coming from a farming background as well as spending my summers working on farms within the region, I have developed a particular interest in working with production animals.
Do you intend to stay and work in the region or spread your wings?
As a 4th year vet student I am unsure at this stage where I'll end up but I am open to returning to work in the Bay as well as other regions of the country. At some stage I would like to spend some time travelling and working overseas. In particular I wish to spend some time working in the UK experiencing some of the different types of farming systems that we do not have in New Zealand.
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Vet science is an extremely competitive faculty to get into – what secrets of success would you pass on to students considering it?
Give it a go! If you are interested don't let the competitive nature of the degree discourage you. I personally found it a challenge getting into vet school. However, after a lot of hard work I managed to get into the professional phase of the degree on my second attempt. For me failing to make the cut the first time provided me with the motivation to work that little bit harder. At the end of the day I suppose it comes down to how much you want it, like anything there are no guarantees but if you put enough work in chances are you'll have a good shot at it.
What's the biggest industry myth re veterinarians?
The biggest myth is that vet science is not a people job. From what I have seen, a vet's ability to interact and effectively communicate with the client is particularly important. This has been recognised by employers and as a result, part of the selection process for the vet degree now involves an interview process which takes into account an applicant's interpersonal skills.