Call of the wild: Sara discovers her true passion

Ahead of tonight’s NSW Training Awards Brendan Berecry talks with a young woman whose studies have helped her understand who’s who in the zoo.

Image: Wild about her work: Sara Morgan

When Sara Morgan embarked on a Certificate III in Captive Animals through TAFE NSW she was already a qualified veterinary nurse.

However she saw the Vocational and Education Training (VET) as a necessary step in expanding her skills to treat wildlife in-need, as well as domestic animals.

In pursuing further studies Ms Morgan not only expanded her knowledge, but discovered her true calling while completing practical training with Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.

Her selection as a vocational student of the year finalist in the NSW Training Awards to be held at Sydney Town Hall tonight reflects the fulfillment she has found in her new role.

Ms Morgan said she initially chose to complete the Certificate III in Captive Animals because she wanted to become a wildlife veterinary nurse.

“Having worked as a domestic veterinary nurse for years I thought this was my next career move,” Ms Morgan said.

“However, I fell in love with working with captive animals and my mind was changed. I found my passion for zookeeping and I’m so glad my career and studies have led me here.”

Ms Morgan was an exemplary student, showing natural skill and ability, and inspiring others in her class.

“As I had already completed the Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing and had industry experience, a lot of students would turn to me for help and advice. I really enjoyed guiding my peers and encouraging them to be the best they can be,” she said.

Ms Morgan said her training with TAFE NSW and Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary had been outstanding, and had served to provide her with incredible experiences, and insight into her career.

“My time at TAFE NSW and Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary has been extraordinary. I embraced the opportunity of working with all different species – native and exotic, and I now have a very clear idea of what my future career path looks like,” she said.

“I now wish to continue working with zoo animals with a focus on conservation of keystone species.”

Ms Morgan said her TAFE NSW teacher had been instrumental in her success.

“My teacher, Alicee Roser, has made this experience thoroughly enjoyable and has been an amazing mentor, constantly encouraging me throughout the year.”

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary were so impressed with Ms Morgan’s work that it offered her a permanent position as Education Officer.

“With the zoo industry being incredibly hard to get into, this would not have been possible without doing the TAFE course. I am so incredibly grateful for receiving this role and have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my work,” she said.

Ms Morgan said she was extremely grateful for the opportunities VET has provided.

“I truly believe that this year has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” she said.

The NSW Training Awards are conducted annually by Training Services NSW in recognition of outstanding achievements in Vocational and Education Training.

A full list of winners will be available after the event.

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