Rachel Hartley Young is a Veterinary Medicine student at Cambridge University in her 4th year and recently completed two weeks Extra-Mural Study (EMS) placement at The Mayhew as part of her studies.
Rachel’s work with animals began when she was just five years old, when she kept asking her mum and dad for a pet. As they lived local to The Mayhew and had attended some of our Open Days, naturally they came to take a look at our abandoned animals looking for a home. Rachel fell in love with a little black kitten, Daisy, who went on to be her life companion for 12 years. After Daisy’s passing they went on to adopt Vinnie from us, who at 12 years old still loves chasing her tail!
A total animal lover, Rachel did her year 10 school work experience at The Mayhew. She spent two weeks working in the cattery and kennels and on her last day was asked if she would be interested in seeing the vets in action. Rachel jumped at the chance and although she almost fainted when watching a cat being spayed, she was also fascinated at the work our vets did.
After volunteering for three more years at The Mayhew at weekends and during school holidays, Rachel was accepted at Cambridge University. It was an easy choice to make when deciding where to complete her EMS studies.
Whilst universities are responsible for teaching students the knowledge they need when first graduating, it is on Extra-Mural Study placements where students further their practical skills in animal handling and apply the clinical skills they have learnt at university in real life. New graduates are able to hit the ground running, having developed their Day One competencies whilst on EMS placements during their degree course.
During veterinary EMS, students shadow the vets in action in surgery, help to prep and care for the animals pre and post-surgery and look after them while they recover. They also get to watch health checks and learn exactly what our vets do on a daily basis.
After graduating Rachel would like to work for a charity, such as The Mayhew, as she loves the dynamic and the ability to help those animals most vulnerable.
Rachel’s tip for those looking into working with animals and becoming a vet is to: “Gain as much experience as possible through volunteering – not only as something to add to your CV but also to enrich your own life.”
She adds: “The Mayhew has been invaluable to helping me on my career path in becoming a vet. I have learned so much and thoroughly recommend EMS placements here. You are pushed to try new things, but always with a guiding and supportive hand.”
The Mayhew Community Veterinary Clinic is known to provide high standard, hands on, practical orientated EMS placements focusing on animal welfare and shelter medicine. Our placements are high in demand so students are encouraged to book well in advance and can do so on our website here.
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