FENLANDER: Neale-Wade students learn the joys of working with animals

A DOG called Boo helped to give sixth formers at Neale-Wade Community College a clear idea of what a career in animal welfare involves.

The chocolate Labrador accompanied Hayley King from Wood Green Animal Shelter in Godmanchester when she gave a talk to about 160 students from Years 12 and 13 at the March school.

The assembly was part of a series of activities being run in Fenland secondary schools under the new Fenland Enterprise in Education (FEE) project.

Ms King described her own career journey, which had included having to handle the disappointment of not getting into her first choice of career as a vet and working briefly as a primary school teacher before taking up her current job.

She explained what her work entailed and joked that one of the most likely occupational hazards was being butted by a goat.

Neale-Wade teacher Lisa Danielli said: “Hayley’s presentation gave students an insight into different careers working with animals and the many and varied pathways that can be followed to enter this field. Bringing the dog in was an added bonus.”

Katie Hart, FEE’s manager, said: “It is so important that students get access to real business people from real businesses. These young people are making some life-changing decisions and we can’t expect them to make them without being well informed about their choices and opportunities.

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“So it is great that organisations like Wood Green are able to come in and support the FEE project by telling students about careers in their industry.”

Ms King said: “It was a pleasure to be able to give the students an idea of the realities of working in animal welfare and it was nice that some of them e-mailed me afterwards to say they’d found it useful.

“It was also a great opportunity to get Wood Green more involved in our community. It can be difficult to make schools and colleges aware of the services we offer, so the FEE initiative was a really good way of bringing us together.”

The FEE project has been developed by Fenland District Council, the Fenland Schools Partnership and the Chamber of Commerce.

Ms Hart said she was keen to organise similar sessions involving other businesses. Anyone keen to get involved should call her on 07891 308050 or e-mail manager@fee-project.co.uk