Growing up on the family run former dairy and beef farm, gave me the passion to work with livestock, in particular cattle. This interest led me to study Applied Animal Science at SAC Auchincruive where I graduated in 2000 with a BSc(Hons). After graduating I worked on the family farm for approximately one year due to the 2001 outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease. Under unfortunate circumstances, I gained temporary employment with the local Trading Standards Department as an Animal Health & Welfare Assistant. In Summer 2002, I joined the then SAC at the Dairy Research and Innovation Centre, Crichton Royal Farm, Dumfries as a Research Technician, before becoming Senior Technician in 2008. Between 2011 and 2013, I studied part time alongside my job for a MSc by Research. This subsequently fuelled my research interests further and with some encouragement, I made the rather “brave” decision to take on a full time PhD Studentship in September 2016 focusing on my main interest, dairy calf health and performance. My PhD project entitled “Preventing respiratory disease in calves: thermal comfort, ventilation and disease transmission” focuses around the calf housing environment and how an understanding of this can lead to improvements in calf health and overall calf performance.


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