danielles94
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So after receiving feedback from an unsuccessful application I was told I didn't have as much Non-academic personal achievements as other candidates, I was just wondering whether someone could give me a few ideas as what to do so I can re apply for vet Med in September? Thanks
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ch0c0h01ic
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The Gold Duke of Edinburgh's Award is your best bet because it is a blend of exercise, skill, voluntary work, residential course and expedition (and it's a serious commitment!). They are like gold dust so to have one makes you stand out in a good way.

You're probably doing a lot of what is needed already, you simply need to enrol, keep sufficient records and get it properly signed off at the end of 12/18 months.

I have yet to come across another Gold award holder at interview and we get a lot of CVs sent in to us.
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LoveToArgue
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(Original post by ch0c0h01ic)
The Gold Duke of Edinburgh's Award is your best bet because it is a blend of exercise, skill, voluntary work, residential course and expedition (and it's a serious commitment!). They are like gold dust so to have one makes you stand out in a good way.

You're probably doing a lot of what is needed already, you simply need to enrol, keep sufficient records and get it properly signed off at the end of 12/18 months.

I have yet to come across another Gold award holder at interview and we get a lot of CVs sent in to us.
is gold dofe really all that useful? I'm currently undertaking it and have got bronze and silver under my belt (despite having a meltdown on bronze and declaring that I would never in a million years be progressing to silver) I've always had the impression that it doesn't make you stand out much, but thats maybe because 40+ people in my year are doing the award
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ifyouseelaura
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Perhaps get a part time job / do some volunteering in something animal related? Good luck
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Little Tail Chaser
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  • Sports (medals, Race for Life etc)
  • Playing a musical instrument (Grades)
  • Part Time Job
  • Scouts/Guides/Cadets etc
  • Gold/Silver/Bronze Duke of Edinburgh, as previously mentioned
  • Wings Of Hope Achievement Award
  • National Citizen Service/The Challenge (you'll be too old to participate now, but could volunteer as a mentor or whatever)
  • Volunteering at a charity shop, U3A, nursing home, local events/festivals etc. Non animally volunteering (otherwise I'd put it down as wex) could count towards v10/v50/v100 awards from vInspired.
  • Young Leader at Scouts/Guides
  • Jack Petchey Awards
  • Youth Parliament
  • Young Farmers' Club
  • Writing for local magazines
  • Crest Bronze/Silver/Gold Awards
  • Nuffield Foundation Placements
  • Additional qualifications e.g. Junior Sports Leader


A few I could think of off the top of my head. Some probably count more as ongoing extracurriculars rather than actual awards but it all goes towards showing that you're well rounded and good and balancing your time and all that.
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sydneybridge
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What they are looking for is evidence that you are determined/ambitious/competitive. That you enjoy a challenge and rise to it. That you don't just follow the crowd or expect things to be handed to you on a plate.

Training hard for a 5km Run, raising sponsorship money and beating your PB on the day of the race - and being really enthusiastic about how you describe this in your PS - is one example.

There are plenty of other possibilities - voluntary or community work is good, especially if it shows you stepping out of your comfort zone/mixing with unfamiliar types of people etc. A good site for interesting voluntary work which you could do over the summer is : http://www.charityjob.co.uk/volunteer-jobs

Its important that you use anything you do to illustrate your personal qualities and explain what you got out of doing it - and with energy and enthusiasm! Talk yourself up!
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ch0c0h01ic
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(Original post by LoveToArgue)
is gold dofe really all that useful? I'm currently undertaking it and have got bronze and silver under my belt (despite having a meltdown on bronze and declaring that I would never in a million years be progressing to silver) I've always had the impression that it doesn't make you stand out much, but thats maybe because 40+ people in my year are doing the award
Bronze and Silver Awards are a lot more common than Golds and they are a lot easier to achieve. Plus a lot of people start Gold to put it in their UCAS personal statement but very few ever come close to finishing it. Hence Gold Awards carry a lot more weight. When I was Awarded my Gold there were 50+ Bronzes and 20 odd Silvers but there was just one Gold.

I have heard of some people treating them like an additional A-level and there are some employers (non veterinary) that will guarantee you an interview if you carry a Gold Award.

It is not going to do you no harm and if you are doing enough to earn the D of E Gold Award you are probably already a strong, well rounded candidate. Getting an award for your hard work is the icing on the top of the cake.

I was asked about my Gold during my RVC, Cambridge and Bristol interviews and I have been asked about it at job interviews. Sure I got two uni offers and I have never had any issues getting a good job but it is just one part of the puzzle and I didn't just stop at the Gold Award (and the same applies to the other aspects of my applications).
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SilverstarDJ
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When I applied to vet med, I had the following extra-curriculars which I mentioned on my PS/interview:
- Art exhibitions
- ICT awards / running my own web design/hosting company
- Young Farmer's Club as I held committee positions and help organised an event that raised £25k on the day
- I am multilungual and used to act as a translator for my school's counselling services
- Crest award

I hope that might give you some ideas. Really I think it is a case of being organised, using and developing skills to help you achieve something (whether this be getting an award or a personal goal). For example, I'm good at art so I got my work exhibited and entered competitions (which I didn't win but was short listed on one of them). If you've got a skill, try to take it further. Or volunteer with non animal organisations and get engaged with committees for instance.
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danielles94
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(Original post by ch0c0h01ic)
The Gold Duke of Edinburgh's Award is your best bet because it is a blend of exercise, skill, voluntary work, residential course and expedition (and it's a serious commitment!). They are like gold dust so to have one makes you stand out in a good way.

You're probably doing a lot of what is needed already, you simply need to enrol, keep sufficient records and get it properly signed off at the end of 12/18 months.

I have yet to come across another Gold award holder at interview and we get a lot of CVs sent in to us.
I'm looking to reapply this September do you reckon that its enough to be in the process of a DoE? Or do you think they're looking for it to be completed when i apply?
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danielles94
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(Original post by ifyouseelaura)
Perhaps get a part time job / do some volunteering in something animal related? Good luck
Already have a part-time job,(as well as previous full time job experience), but could consider doing volunteering. Just wondering if that's what they're looking for/if it's enough!
Thanks for the advice though!
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sydneybridge
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(Original post by danielles94)
I'm looking to reapply this September do you reckon that its enough to be in the process of a DoE? Or do you think they're looking for it to be completed when i apply?
Its fine to be completing it when you apply - but you also need to be doing something else outside school that school hasn't organised for you. And you need to explain what you got out of doing these various activities in terms of skill development, confidence, social skills etc.
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danielles94
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(Original post by sydneybridge)
Its fine to be completing it when you apply - but you also need to be doing something else outside school that school hasn't organised for you. And you need to explain what you got out of doing these various activities in terms of skill development, confidence, social skills etc.
Okay thank you for the advice! I'm not in school so everything will be organised off my own back anyway
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SilverstarDJ
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(Original post by danielles94)
Already have a part-time job,(as well as previous full time job experience), but could consider doing volunteering. Just wondering if that's what they're looking for/if it's enough!
Thanks for the advice though!
A part time job is good but probably isn't enough if that is all you have done EC wise - lots of people will have got jobs AND achieved/done other things.
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