The Biology department recently took 40 students to visit the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) open day. This was a two-hour programme of science displays and tours so our students could learn more about working on animal health research. The role of the APHA is to detect and control animal and plant diseases.
The students were able to chat to the scientists and carry out hands-on activities such as looking at pathology slides, observing ticks and mosquitoes and carrying out some bacteriology activities. The students were also able to speak to the scientists about their career pathway and to the HR team about job and further study/training opportunities, including apprenticeships.
Overall this was a very enjoyable trip for students and staff where they learnt about the different areas of research and the different career paths that they could take. It also highlighted the apprenticeship opportunities that they could embark on with the APHA.
‘Whilst visiting the facilities at APHA we spoke to a variety of scientists about their separate specialities and their roles on the site. I particularly enjoyed the visits to the labs where we discussed precautions that scientists have to take when working with bacteria like tuberculosis. Additionally, we were able to practice key skills such as pipetting oil off simulated blood and identifying damaged lung tissues under the microscope. The day gave me good insight into what a future career might be like as a scientist,’ said Biology student Jemma.
About the APHA:
We work to safeguard animal and plant health for the benefit of people, the environment and the economy. The APHA is an executive agency, sponsored by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, the Welsh Government, and The Scottish Government.