What are you currently doing and who are you working for? Can you give a brief description of what you did from graduation up to now?
I am currently working for Birmingham City Council as an Enforcement Officer in the Environmental Health Department; a role which is varied and challenging, allowing me to develop the skills and knowledge I will need for my future career in Environmental Health.
After completing my MSc Environmental Health I completed a Student Placement with Birmingham City Council, which allowed me gain a wide variety of experiences within the sector and develop my skills and knowledge with the help of a fantastic team of Environmental Health Officers.
During this time I have completed the CIEH professional examination and interview and have recently submitted my portfolio of professional practice and hope to soon be a qualified Environmental Health Officer.
Can you give a short outline of the course you studied at the University of Birmingham and how it benefited you?
I studied MSc Environmental Health at the University of Birmingham which covered all the relevant subject areas including; food safety, health and safety, environmental pollution and protection, health protection, housing and health and law.
The course was well structured and provided me with an excellent grounding in all the core disciplines of Environmental Health.
All modules were supported by knowledgeable University lecturers and a number of expert guest lecturers providing sound theoretical knowledge, a range of interesting case studies and an insight into the practical applications of Environmental Health .
How did you find your first year in Birmingham?
The MSc was a 12 month course and it certainly was a busy year! I settled in and found my way around campus in the first couple of weeks and the year went by so quickly!
How did going to University as a whole benefit you?
Upon completion of my undergraduate degree I began to consider a career in Environmental Health as the field offered a practical application of the science based background that I had.
Completing my MSc provided me with the opportunity to gain experience, and now employment, in Environmental Health which otherwise I would not have had the opportunity to do.
I feel postgraduate study can really help to set you apart from other candidates in the increasingly competitive job market.
How did you find campus life? Can you describe how it was to study here at Edgbaston Campus rather than in a City Centre location?
I found Edgbaston campus to have everything I needed; from great study spaces and resources to shops, bars, banks and even a fruit and veg market!
Campus is relaxed but vibrant with some beautiful green spaces and plenty going on. The university train station provides a quick, cheap and easy link to the city centre and I’m pleased I choose to study at Edgbaston away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Did you join any student societies or take part in any events during your studies?
Unfortunately the MSc was a full time course and I didn’t find time to join any societies; however my friends and I did find time to use some of the excellent facilities available to the Munrow Sports Centre and the Student Guild.
Any tips or words of wisdom that you would like to pass on to other students thinking of coming to study here?
As with most degrees, if you’re thinking of studying Environmental Health I would read up on the subject and make sure that it’s something you are really interested in as it is relatively specific.
I think it’s important to be aware that the course does cover some more technical elements with the law and microbiology work but if you like variety, problem solving and improving health and the environment then this MSc is likely to be a great option.
What are your aspirations for the future?
I hope to soon qualify as an Environmental Health Officer and for the moment my plans are to initially spend some time gaining experience of working in the field.
In the future I think I would like to specialise in a specific discipline of Environmental Health and I’m always interested in the range of opportunities within public health in both the public and private sectors.
Ultimately I hope to always be helping people to improve their health and the environment.