JOB: Quarantine inspector, Ministry for Primary industries (MPI)
QUALIFICATION: Bachelor of Applied Science (Animal Management and Welfare)
“In the third year of my degree I undertook a research project on what individual countries do at international airports to prevent the spread of insects and disease. I loved it so much that when MPI advertised Quarantine Inspector jobs last year I jumped at the chance to apply. I now work in places where biosecurity risk goods can enter New Zealand, including the airport and the port. I inspect items like footwear, wooden products, imported fruit and also live animals. All of these can carry hitch-hiking insects, or diseases which could compromise the biosecurity and economy of our country.
My degree has complemented my hands-on experience in the industry and that’s what I think is unique about Unitec. I was lucky enough to experience the ‘real world’ before I graduated, so there was a smooth transition into the full-time workforce. I don’t think I will ever stop learning. There is a huge variety of jobs within MPI that I am considering for the future – animal welfare, dog handling, entomology and even some offshore biosecurity work. It’s a developing and changing industry and my future job might not even have been created yet. That’s what’s exciting!”