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  • Writer's pictureKatie Smith

Young Farmers & Uni Interviews

January has been a really busy month so far, with plenty of young farmers competitions to prepare for and university interviews to anxiously anticipate. I had an interview to study at the University of Surrey on the 12th of January. We travelled down to Surrey on the morning and arrived with plenty of time to spare. Because my interview was at 12:45 and I would be there for nearly 3 hours, we stopped in Guildford town centre and has lunch before the interview. We then headed to the Vet School and I went in for my interview with about 25 others. After the interview, we went on a tour of the campus and got to see the pathology building and the sports centre – both of which I hadn’t seen on the open day previously. It was also good to have a look at the rest of the buildings again and speak to some students about how it was living in Surrey and studying at the Vet School. After coming away from the interview I felt really positive about it and waited (very impatiently) to hear if I had been successful. Thankfully, I only had a week to wait before receiving an email informing me to check my UCAS track, followed by another one from the University itself congratulating me on receiving an offer. This is my first offer for Veterinary Medicine so I was very happy to get it! I’m so happy to have an offer now so that I really have something to work for and something to look forward to.  Last weekend, was the Worcestershire Young Farmer’s Public Speaking competitions, so I drove down to Droitwich Spa High School (in the snow!) to compete. I arrived nice an early to sign in for my competitions with bags of costume changes, tablecloths, jugs of water etc. to hand.  My first competition of the day was one I had never competed in before – Just a Minute. They do this on Radio 4 I think, it’s basically where four people take it in turns starting off talking about a topic for as long as they can without repetition, hesitation or deviation from the subject. Some of the topics I had to speak about were zoos, books and pubs, but it can be anything from hats to AGM when it comes to young farmers. Much to our surprise, my club seemed to really take to this competition and we ended up placing first which was great! Next, I competed in the Junior Member of the Year competition, it was my last chance of competing technically an intermediate this year but the way it works out, if you were a junior member last year you can compete in your first year as an intermediate. I presented my information about how I had contributed to Young Farmers in the past 12 months and then sat my interview. I think it went really well and I really got to show how much I know about the organization and how much I (try) to do to promote it. I was happy with the 2nd place I achieved in the competition and I am looking forward to moving on to Member of the Year (for Intermediate & Senior) next year…

I also chaired the MACE Debating which was something really new for me. It was actually a really tricky job as you have to record the lengths of the speakers’ points, make comments, move the debate along and conduct a vote at the end. It is definitely something I would do again now though after giving it a go this year, I think I would be more confident next time as I would know what to expect. Unfortunately, my club didn’t place in this but it’s the taking part that matters and we all gained a valuable experience from it.  The last event of the day was the disco dancing. I don’t know how I got roped into this one as the extent of my dancing ‘skill’ – if you could go as far as to call it skill – is my Grade 2 ballet, I left ballet before I even got my Grade 3 so take what you will from that! We practised our medley of disco songs with our very advanced routine containing all the classics: It’s Raining Men, the Macarena, The Birdy Song and I Don’t Believe You Want to Get Up and Dance (oops upside your head), and donned our neon tops, legwarmers and headbands before taking to the stage. We may not have won (or placed) but we definitely entertained. 

As you can tell, it’s been a busy start to the year – but start as you mean to go on! 

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