UQ student Tara Russell's dream to work with animals is back on track after undertaking an alternative study option.
UQ student Tara Russell's dream to work with animals is back on track after undertaking an alternative study option.
9 December 2013

The University of Queensland’s Options Evening on 18 December will help students find new paths to their dream courses and careers.

When Pittsworth State High School graduate Tara Russell got her OP results this time last year her hopes for a veterinary career faded.

Tara had her sights set on a career with animals, and hoped to study veterinary science at The University of Queensland, but her OP score fell short of the entry requirements.

“I was disappointed as I thought my OP meant there would be no way I could have a career with animals,” Tara said.

But Tara soon discovered there was more than one pathway to her dream job and wider career prospects to consider.

“I was eligible for UQ’s Applied Science program majoring in Veterinary Technology.  I learned that after one year in tertiary study my uni grades would be used instead of my OP for entry,” she said.

“I found the Veterinary Technology program beneficial as the courses I undertook opened my mind to new career options I was never aware of. 

“During my schooling I always had a passion for agriculture and its importance in a world with an ever-growing population.

“However, I never imagined I would seek a career in this industry.

“That was until I undertook the Veterinary Technology program which included a number of agricultural and environmental courses.

Tara plans to study agricultural science next year, and now hopes to specialise in animal nutrition.

UQ School Engagement Manager Steve Forster said many school leavers found themselves in Tara’s situation each year.

“Your hopes of studying a certain program at your university of choice don’t have to end if your OP result misses the cut-off,” Mr Forster said.

“There are many tertiary preparatory programs and alternative pathways to be considered.”

He said the UQ Options Evening on 18 December would help students make final decisions about their QTAC preferences.

“Students can speak to staff from each of our faculties to understand their study options and pathways available with their OPs,” he said.

He said Options Evening would also benefit students who didn’t want to change their preferences.

“It’s a great way to learn about the opportunities at UQ to experience life beyond the classroom, including global experiences such as study abroad, internships and voluntary work.

“Student ambassadors will also be on hand to talk about university life.”

Tara said last year’s UQ Options Evening had helped prepare her for university.

“My advice to school leavers is to keep an open mind and investigate all of the pathways to your preferred degree,” she said.

“There are many different ways to achieve your dream career.”

UQ Options Evening is from 4pm-7pm Wednesday 18 December at the UQ Centre, St Lucia. Register your attendance here.