Student Profile

Photograph of Kara Hardy

Kara Hardy

Graduated: BSc (Hons) Conservation and Environment
Nationality: British
Occupation: Intern

Why did you choose to study at Writtle University College?
I heard about Writtle College through my aunty who lives in Southend and when I read the course specification I thought this could be the university for me. I then made a visit to their open day and I really fell in love with the location of Writtle College, situated in a village, with a quaint pub and pond on the village green.

In addition the college itself was small and I noticed how friendly people were to each other on campus, which had good facilities with everything close to hand, but also close to the nearby city of Chelmsford with its cafes, shops and bars.

What does Writtle University College mean to you?
I really enjoyed my time at Writtle College! The teachers are very friendly and helpful, with a very open door policy. The course itself has helped to give me broad knowledge of the various factors which are affecting the environment at present giving us a foundation in biological processes, ecology and habitat management, a history of the UK countryside and sector-relevant surveying skills, to global issues such as climate change and protected area management. The course has given me the confidence to be able to step into a variety of roles within the sector, both locally, nationally and globally!

What did you particularly enjoy about your course?
I enjoyed the outdoor aspects of the module including vegetation surveys, woodland surveys and river condition assessments which I have found to be particularly helpful during my time at Buglife and I know will be particularly useful within the environmental sector. These are the skills that the sector requires, which have been underpinned by the theoretical side of the course, which I also thoroughly enjoyed.

My Career Path
After finishing my degree at Writtle College I was awarded a grant from the People’s Trust for Endangered Species (www.PTES.org) to undertake a 6 month internship with Buglife which involves managing my own project to study a rare bee of salt marshes, the sea aster mining bee Colletes halophilus. Buglife approached Writtle College about one of their students applying for the grant in collaboration with them, therefore without Writtle College I would not be in the position I am in now.

In addition the course at Writtle covered a wide range of relevant modules which helped me to be successful in my grant application. The knowledge and experiences gained from the course has supported me throughout my time at Buglife, particularly during field work, such as vegetation surveys and also in presenting my project at a Buglife staff conference in Scotland.

Prior to this, immediately after I finished at Writtle, I also worked for one month with an ecological consultancy undertaking reptile translocation at part of the Environment Agency’s sea defence project in Sandwich, Kent.

My Current Job
I am currently an intern at Buglife (The Invertebrate Conservation Trust).

Future Plans
I hope to save enough money to be able to complete an MSc in Conservation Management at Writtle College or possibly to go to Eberswalde University in Germany, which has links with Writtle College, to study their MSc in Global Change Management.