Barony Campus 2013-14 Student Newsletters

by Barony Student Newsletter Group (2013 - 2014)

Student Newsletter Banner

December 2013/January 2014, Issue 9.

Welcome to the Award Winning SRUC Barony Campus Student Newsletter.

SRUC LogoWelcome to our December 2013/January 2014 newsletter release! We have articles from students from Animal Care, Agriculture on their AgriScot visit, Equine on their Work Experience placements and much more.


You can click on the thumbnail images within the image galleries to view larger images. Text highlighted as green within the articles are hyperlinks to websites and other resources, which open in new windows. You can also place feedback (using the Place feedback link) and rate our newsletter at the bottom of the newsletter page.

You can view last year's student newsletters by clicking here

Our next student newsletter release will be on the 28th of February 2014

On the 28th October and the 11th November, our NC Animal Care class was split into two groups to visit the Consulting Veterinary Services Laboratory and Disease Surveillance Centre. 

While we visited, we got a tour, from Lesley McRoberts (Senoir Laboratory Scientist), of each of the labs, disinfection areas and storage areas too! We got a tour of their isolation unit where there would be strict access to enter if it was in use.

We also got shown round the walk in freezers and storage rooms. We were provided with white long dust coats to wear while the tour was taking place. While having a tour, our class was shown what diseases they look for and how they are able to notice the diseases being present on an agar plate.

They also had a massive sterilising machine which looked a bit like an oven, they used it to sterilise any utensils that needed cleaned thoroughly after use. When we walked into the lab next to the autopsy room, there was a horrible smell of dead animals and it was really warm too. They used the autopsy room to check for diseases in the dead animals that may have caused the animal to die.

They are able to do this by taking samples from the carcass and doing various tests on them. They normally take the heart, kidneys, lungs and liver from the carcass to carry out the tests on.

At the end of the tour, each one of us was offered a chance to come back in when we have any free time to do some work experience.

I’m sure many of our class mates will take this great opportunity for some great experience. And thank you for being able to show us around your labs.

By: Emma Connolly, (NC Animal Care)


On Wednesday 4th December we invited everyone to come and join us in our classroom for our Christmas Sale.  It was good to see that so many people were interested in what we do.  We were very busy all day.

All year we have been busy preparing – we started in September by gathering fruit etc to make jam, chutney and marmalade.  In November we made Christmas Cakes and surprised ourselves by how good some of us were at icing them.  We had lots of craft sessions making decorations.  We all learnt how important it is to listen, take care and follow instructions.

We had to use our I/t classes to make posters, labels, etc.

 In the week before the sale we made over 200 Mince Pies, and enjoyed tasting to see that they were right. We even baked lollipops, Shortbread and Christmas Cupcakes.

On the afternoon before the sale we were amazed by how much we had made – it proved that we had been busy all term.

On the day we got on really well as a team and we all played our part – no-one skived off their share of the work.

Our best parts of the day were –

  • “talking to people” – Janet
  • “seeing so many people here” – Ruaridh
  • “serving people teas, coffees and mince pies” – Shereen
  • “that my sister came to see me at College” – Dana
  • “seeing my Mum and Dad come along, even though Dad was on night shift”

We want to thank everyone for donating raffle prizes – Alison and Janet are moaning that they didn`t win anything.  We made over £270 which was amazing.

Thank you for coming everyone.

By: Shereen, Dana, Bethany, Ruaridh and Janet (Employment Evaluation)

On the 17th of March Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Education will be coming to the Barony Campus on behalf of the Scottish Further and Higher Education Funding Council to carry out a review of the standards and quality of the Campus. The inspectors will be going throughout out the Barony Campus for three days and they will be involved with classroom observations and discussions. The inspectors will speak to students during this time and may want to find out:

  • How well students are moving forward and achieving their targets within the course.
  • How well lessons and teaching techniques work for students.
  • How students enhance their own learning and life of the Campus, for example: studying, group discussions with fellow students or giving feedback to lecturers on the positives and negatives of the lesson. We should also think about how the college supports students to do so, for example: encouraging students to study, giving revisions notes or offering time for feedback.
  • How well the Campus is enhancing the quality of its services for learners.
  • How well the Campus uses the class representative system.
  • How well the Campus uses the opinions and views of the students to improve its services.

A student team member will also be present to speak to members of the Students Association and to students particularly in social or independent learning areas.

Students should remember it is the Barony Campus and not the learners which will be reviewed. Students should also consider the negatives and positives about their learning experience at the Campus and feedback to representatives and be prepared to share your views with the student team member if you are approached. The inspectors will be visiting SRUC for three days, which will include the single day visit to Barony Campus.

Once the review is complete the review team will meet to discuss their findings of the college and a report will be published and placed on the Education Scotland Website.

By: Marie Reid (HND Animal Care & Barony Campus Officer)

The Annual Barony Campus Burn’s Supper was held on Tuesday the 28th of January and was attended by over 70 staff and students.  The top table was piped in by Matthew Burgess of the NC Agricultural Engineering course. He then piped in the haggis carried by Gillian Peat.  The Address to the Haggis was given by Adam Wardrop (Agriculture Programme Leader), with plenty of animation and flashing of knife blade.  After the Selkirk Grace everyone enjoyed a meal of Scotch Broth, Haggis Tatties and Neeps followed by Chocolate Mousse.

Left-right: Dave Ritchie, Rebecca Reid, Tom Karas, Charlie Osborne and Adam Wardrop

After the meal Tom Karas (Forestry lecturer) gave his Immortal Memory based on how Rabbie would look at the Year 2014 with the Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup and Independence Vote.  This was followed by Dave Ritchie (Engineering lecturer) looking at A Mans a Man for All That and how Burns looked at the social conditions of his time.

The evening then moved onto the Toast to the Lassies by NC Animal Care students Charlie Osborne and the Reply by Rebecca Reid.  These were both well prepared and delivered.  The audience responded with the laughs and knowing smiles their comments and suggestions merited.

A big thanks to everyone who took part in the Burns supper and who also wore tartan on the night. Thank you to the catering staff for preparing a great traditional meal. Thanks everyone who was brave enough to talk and it was a very enjoyable night with a friendly atmosphere. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed it and they hope next year’s event is such a success.

Thank you to Rebecca Reid and Charlie Osborne for the oath to the lassies and response as we were both approached last minute and very nervous about the idea. Thank you to Tom, David, Adam and Kerry for their speeches. Hopefully the next Burns supper will be as much of a successful as this one has been.

By: Rebecca Reid (NC Animal Care)

Student Rep Meeting Minutes (January)

Student R...15th.pdf

260.6KB | Wednesday, 29 January 2014 | Details

Creative Commons license

Creative Commons license

December 2013 / January 2014 by Barony Student Newsletter Group (2013 - 2014) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported license.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from Barony Student Newsletter Group (2013 - 2014).

Nominations for the campus officer 2014/15 will start on the 24th of February. Nominations are taking place so early this year in order to have a campus officer already in place for the new term starting in August.


There will be a week of nominating, a week of campaigning and a week of voting before the decision is made on Friday the 14th of March.

If you are interested in this position or know someone who is contact the current campus officer Marie Reid ( for more information on the role and what is involved. For those who are not interested in running for the role it is important you vote as you could be the winner of a Kindle Fire or a £20 gift voucher for amazon. Look out for more information!

By Marie Reid (HND Animal Care & Barony Campus Officer)




The whole of the agricultural classes from the SRUC Barony Campus enjoyed a nice day out when we travelled to Edinburgh to go to one of Scotland’s biggest Farming events. For some it was their first time and for others they had been in previous years. Agri-Scot is a place where people who can go and see how they can improve their farms, where people can meet old friends and discuss what their life is like on their farms and even people who have a keen interest in farming and they can be budding young farmers who can have prosperity on the land in the future they will own.

At Agri-Scot there was a whole load of events taking place under the same roof. Such events ranged from a demonstration on how fertilisation takes place to what you need to have in your feed to get the most out of your beasts and even show how to trim the cattle and/or sheep to present them for shows. It was a generally great atmosphere all around the event and there was a great sense of community spirit.

There was a section on farm machinery from different companies for different purposes such as seed drills to just simple plain tractors. Hours past which only seemed like minutes as all the students even the Barony lecturers gallivanted round the show taking their time and paying very close detail to what was happening all around them. Barony was successful in winning third place in the silage competition in which we are all pleased with the result.

It is of no doubt that many people from the agricultural classes who might not come back to Barony will definitely continue going to Agri-Scot  and to have close contact as to see how they can improve.

As for I a potential young budding farmer who has less experience with the agricultural side of life thoroughly enjoyed Agri-Scot as it was my first time going there and I enjoyed looking at the machinery,  the feeding stands, the trimming demonstrations and generally the whole lot.

At the end of the day we carried home the knowledge and understanding of how things work and all the information guides which will help us not only in lectures and studying but in the future as well.

By: Michael Gregori (NC Agriculture)


Keep an eye open for up and coming fund-raising event organised by the HNC Animal Care students! Money made will go to Nowzad Dogs, a charity that aims to improve the welfare of animals in Afghanistan.

Back in November 2006, what started out as s heart-warming friendship struck between a Royal Marine and a stray dog has now transformed into a well-established safe haven, not only for dogs but cats and working animals too.

From February and onwards the HNC Animal Care students are hosting various fun and exciting fund-raising events. From DVD/CD sales, sponsored walks, car washing and student auctions. All are welcome Laughing

By: Katie Wood (HNC Animal Care)

Lowri Shearer & Laura Gillan

We had a fantastic five days at BlackFord Glen Western Riders Club  - We stepped out of the comforts of the English riding world and dropped into the Western Discipline. At the heart of Edinburgh city there is a western experience welcoming all riders to try their hand at Western Riding.  We joined John Fyfe a WES Western Instructor and trainer at his home and yard. It’s from here he runs Western Clinics and classes and a Western Riding School.



If the smaller, compact Quarter Horses didn’t throw us off, the 30/40 pounds western saddles sure did.  It’s a world apart from our typical boots and chaps but we slipped comfortably into Stetson’s and spurs provided.  The Glen gang were warm and welcoming they wanted to share every possible aspect of the western world, from ground manners to riding lessons.  People think western riding is an easy and lazy way of riding.  They definitely took us back to school and we had to start from the beginning.   All your English riding won’t help you here!


Kaitlin McMillan

I had a fabulous five days at High Gainford Stables in Fenwick.  The stables are run by Lindsay Mathieson and his wife, they have a few stable hands that help out with their 30+ full and DIY liveries and the 70+ horses that they have of their own.  The duties I had to carry out where mucking out 9 allocated stables and anymore extra that they gave me.  I filled hay nets for all the horses twice a day, leading horses in and out of the field for two of the days I was there.  On top of this I did other duties around the yard like sweeping, washing legs etc.  All the people on the yard where really friendly and gave me help when I needed it.


 Amy Wilson

Amy WilsonFor my placement I went up to Ardene house veterinary practice in Aberdeen and helped around the equine department.  Throughout the week I was able to observe different kinds of treatment ranging from x-rays to new regenerative treatments which I found extremely interesting!  I was lucky enough to go up on a busy week which made sure there was plenty to do like mucking out and helping with trot ups.  All the staff were very welcoming and always made sure I understood what the vets were doing at the time.  Overall I thoroughly enjoyed my placement and learned loads.


Inga Hill

I went to Mount St John Equestrian stud yard for five days for my work experience.  They deal with  top dressage mares and bring in some of the top dressage sires.  MSJ do all the embryo transfers on site from their top mares into some of their recipient mares.   The cheapest colts go for around £15, 000 and they export them not only to Britain but to various other parts of the world.  Most of the fillys get kept to be trained up by their riders to become future dressage stars.  I had a great time working there and the yard was very impressive, it was well worth the travel down to Thirst in North Yorkshire.

By: Lowrie Shearer, Laura Gillan, Kaitlan McMillan, Amy Wilson and Inga Hill (NC Horse Care)

Comments are moderated. If you choose to make this comment public, it will not be visible to others until it is approved by the owner.