Setting sail to protect the oceans and seas

BSc (Hons) Environmental Science graduate Kate Rider.

Choosing Plymouth

I think what attracted me to environmental science was the diverse interdisciplinary modules, and the expertise of the lecturers. The broad nature of the course allowed me to combine by interests and enhance them throughout the course.

Studying environmental science, the location was perfect for field trips as it's close to the coastline, Dartmoor, and Cornwall.

<p>Port Isaac, Cornwall</p>
Port Isaac, Cornwall
<p>Haytor, Dartmoor National Park</p>
Haytor, Dartmoor National Park
<p>Pedn Vounder and Porthcurno Beach, South Cornwall</p>
Pedn Vounder and Porthcurno Beach, South Cornwall

Placement opportunity in Hong Kong

My summer placement with Swire Institute of Marine Science in Hong Kong during my undergraduate degree was definitely the best and most exciting thing I have done. The opportunity to live and work in a completely new country was incredible. Thank you for all the support I received from the careers and placements department!

My summer placement really cemented my career plans to go onto a masters. In the longer term, my marine lectures and dissertation strengthened my plans to go into the marine management sector.

The work placement in Hong Kong and the field trip to Malta were definitely the best things during my time at Plymouth.

The great thing about Plymouth is the range of opportunities to improve your skills, which includes but is not limited to: research skills (lab and field), GIS skills, and individual and group presentations which have all increased the confidence I have in myself.

I have lots of treasured memories from the range of field trips with my friends, from Malta, to working on board the Falcon Spirit (the university’s boat with wet laboratory), and many trips up on Dartmoor and the surrounding areas.

<p>Kate Rider</p>
<p>Kate Rider</p>

In hindsight

Don’t worry and stress so much. I had countless long nights in the library stressing about assignments. I should have relaxed a bit more, enjoyed my time in Plymouth, and taken every opportunity out there! I would have also liked to have joined more societies!

I would have liked to do another placement or internship in the summer since graduating, but I’m very happy in York now.

Next steps

After completing my studies at Plymouth, I had a few months break before I began studying for a masters in marine environmental management at University of York. As part of this I have to two dissertations, one at York and one externally.

Going into university I was unsure about my plans afterwards, but thanks to the education and support I’ve received at Plymouth, I managed to get onto a masters programme at the University of York. I now know I want to go into the marine management sector, working to set up new protected areas. This will allow me to use knowledge from my law lectures!

I am hoping to do research into setting up a new World Heritage Site on the high seas, the part of the ocean outside of national control. For the external dissertation, I hope to go on placement working with seals!

I'd recommend undertaking study at the University of Plymouth because the services open for students are amazing. I definitely made the most of the 24/7 library with a wide range of resources online, and LabPlus with lots of study space. Peer Assisted Learning (PALs) is a brilliant way to get some help from other students about assignments, lectures, or about settling into university life.

The Careers Service are also so welcoming and happy to help with CV and interview skills, or to chat about the next steps after your undergraduate degree.

The city is also a great place to live, everything is so close to the university, and the proximity to the sea is so lovely. Going down to the Hoe in the evening is the best way to end the day.

Photographs courtesy of Getty Images

  • Port Isaac, Cornwall
  • Haytor, Dartmoor National Park
  • Pedn Vounder and Porthcurno Beach, Cornwall