Do you want to learn more about the animals that inhabit our natural world and form a lifelong career? Careers within the Animal Sector are not only very rewarding, they’re also very varied so no two days are the same! For this reason, we offer a variety of courses to help you to start your journey onto the job of your dreams, in whichever area of the industry that might be!
Follow us on Facebook | Watch videos of our animals and Animal Centre
“An understanding of the natural world and what’s in it is a source of not only a great curiosity, but great fulfilment” - David Attenborough
Based on the main campus in Bury St Edmunds, we have an onsite Animal Centre boasting over 200 animals across four areas. A passionate team of industry professionals will teach you a variety of modules both practical and theory based, preparing you for employment in industry.
You will also be given the opportunity to attend trips within the sector and undertake numerous hands on experiences, gaining opportunities to develop transferable skills for employment and further study. Part of our role whilst you’re working with us is to install Professional Standards which will support to make you more employable within our competitive industry.
Our department is developing future Veterinary Surgeons, Veterinary Nurses, Animal Nursing Assistants, Zookeepers, Herpetologists, Ecologists, Wildlife Conservationists, Welfare Inspectors and many more! With approximately 250 students engaged in the Animal Studies, we pride ourselves on giving our students the best possible start to their future career.
We look forward to supporting you to achieve your dream job within the Animal Sector!
Sarah Eaton – Head of Animal Studies
Select your course to apply online
Where could it take me?
Work experience is an integral part of all of our courses within Animal Studies and is especially important if you are hoping to go onto university. Due to the competitive nature of the Animal Sector, we encourage our students to undertake as many different placements as they can, whilst ensuring they undertake the mandatory hours required by each programme (150 hours for all Level 3 and Technical courses).
We have built excellent links with local businesses within the Animal Sector, with over 150 across East Anglia currently offering work experience placements to our students. We’re proud to report that a majority of our students are offered employment (or further training) by their work experience providers, so it is an excellent way to gain entry to the industry.
If you are hard working and love animals there are plenty of different careers available within the Animal Sector.
- Jobs involving the direct care and treatment of animals within the Veterinary Industry include; Animal Nursing Assistant, Veterinary Nurse (Equine/Small Animal/Exotic/Large Animal), Veterinary Physiotherapist, Veterinary Receptionist, Veterinary Surgeon (Equine/Small Animal/Exotic/Large Animal), Veterinary Behaviourist, Canine Hydrotherapist etc.
- Jobs working with exotic animals include; Zookeeper, Zoologist, Herpetologist, Ichthyologist, Entomologist, Marine Biologist, Ornithologist, Aquarist, Primatologist, Animal Trainer, Falconer etc.
- Jobs working with wildlife and the conservation of animals include; Wildlife Ranger, Wildlife Educator, Wildlife Rehabilitator, Ecologist, Conservationist, Researcher, Field Biologist etc.
- Jobs working directly to improve the welfare of animals include; Animal Rescuer, Canine Carer, Animal Trainer, Animal Welfare Officer, Rehoming Coordinator, Animal Centre Manager, Environmental Health Officer, Animal Technician, Kennel/Cattery Assistant etc.
- Jobs working within the pet sector include; Dog Groomer, Dog Walker, Pet Sitter, Pet Shop Assistant, Canine Creche Carers etc.
If any of the above interest you, you’ve come to the right place!
What can I do next?
Once you have completed your course with us there are many exciting next steps you can take! One option is to progress to the next level course with us (if you are undertaking Level 1 or Level 2) to continue to improve your skills and knowledge, making you more employable within the Animal Sector (progression to the next course requires students to achieve a Merit overall for their current programme, and to improve on their Maths and English grades).
Another option is an apprenticeship within the industry, allowing animal businesses to develop your knowledge and skills within their organisation! Level 2 Animal Care and Welfare Assistant apprenticeships are popular, and some veterinary practices offer a Level 3 Veterinary Nursing apprenticeship which is a fantastic way to become qualified! Upon completion of the Level 3 Extended Diploma, students can go on to a number of pathways including University or entering the industry by working within one of the many different sectors. Students on the Level 3 Extended Diploma can achieve between 48 and 168 UCAS tariff points depending on their end grade.
Veterinary Surgeons - The workforce is projected to grow by 8.7% over the period to 2027, creating 2,300 jobs. In the same period, 53.7% of the workforce is projected to retire, creating 13,900 job openings. Average salary £34,320
Veterinary Nurses - The workforce is projected to grow by 11.6% over the period to 2027, creating 1,900 jobs. In the same period, 57% of the workforce is projected to retire, creating 9,200 job openings. Average salary £18,200
Conservation Professionals – The workforce is projected to grow by 5.1% over the period to 2027, creating 800 jobs. In the same period, 39.9% of the workforce is projected to retire, creating 6,100 job openings. Average salary £33,800
Animal care services occupations N.E.C. - The workforce is projected to grow by 11.6% over the period to 2027, creating 8,700 jobs. In the same period, 57% of the workforce is projected to retire, creating 42,900 job openings. Average salary between £12,000 and £14,000
“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” ― Jane Goodall
Select your course to apply online
Thank you to our Animal Studies centre sponsors Phillips Brothers (wood shavings), Bury St Edmunds Veterinary Centre and Copdock Mill (Gladwells Pet and Country Store), plus our individual course sponsors.