Hands-on experience creates strong education outcomes

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VALUABLE LEARNING… From left, University of Melbourne’s Bachelor of Agriculture students, Clare Jensen, Sarah Butler and Callum Unger with student experience co-ordinator, Karen Edwards. The students are studying at the Parkville campus in Melbourne but have taken the opportunity to participate in semesters at the Dookie campus, which they say has been invaluable to their education. Photo: David Lee.
VALUABLE LEARNING… From left, University of Melbourne’s Bachelor of Agriculture students, Clare Jensen, Sarah Butler and Callum Unger with student experience co-ordinator, Karen Edwards. The students are studying at the Parkville campus in Melbourne but have taken the opportunity to participate in semesters at the Dookie campus, which they say has been invaluable to their education. Photo: David Lee.
VALUABLE LEARNING… From left, University of Melbourne’s Bachelor of Agriculture students, Clare Jensen, Sarah Butler and Callum Unger with student experience co-ordinator, Karen Edwards. The students are studying at the Parkville campus in Melbourne but have taken the opportunity to participate in semesters at the Dookie campus, which they say has been invaluable to their education. Photo: David Lee.
VALUABLE LEARNING… From left, University of Melbourne’s Bachelor of Agriculture students, Clare Jensen, Sarah Butler and Callum Unger with student experience co-ordinator, Karen Edwards. The students are studying at the Parkville campus in Melbourne but have taken the opportunity to participate in semesters at the Dookie campus, which they say has been invaluable to their education. Photo: David Lee.

“Having access to Dookie College has made all the difference.”

HAVING access to hands-on educational experiences that directly reflects what you are learning is a valuable part of any student’s success. Thanks to the University of Melbourne’s Dookie Campus that’s exactly what Sarah Butler and some of her fellow students get through their Bachelor of Agriculture course.

Although they carry out their course at Parkville in Melbourne, the students are given the opportunity to complete two semesters at the Dookie campus, which Sarah and her fellow classmates said is an invaluable experience.

Sarah said, “It is important to have the experience of an agricultural area as you actually get to carry out ‘pracs’ in the field…meaning you actually go out to see what’s growing and carry out experiments in real farmland.

“Being at Dookie has allowed us to be more connected with what we are studying.

“At Dookie we have access to so much that is beneficial to our learning such as the robotic dairy, shearing shed, general dairy, winery, brewery, cropping, greenhouses, veterinarian and research facilities as well as on-farm soil, crops and other horticulture aspects.

“We also get the chance to connect with a lot of agricultural industries and farmers and can get a feel for how the industry is going and gives us the opportunity to even get hands-on experience through employment opportunities.

“The Dookie campus is great. There are facilities to stay on-campus and by doing that we can take part in Zoom Lectures, which are live streamed lectures from Parkville, meaning we can still take part and interact.

“The staff are so dedicated too, which makes all the difference. They are so passionate about what they are teaching and are more than just teachers as they actually work in the industry themselves.

“A lot of people that didn’t come up last year are now wanting to do semesters at Dookie after hearing of our experiences.

“Having access to Dookie College has made all the difference. We are all better off for it.”

Student, Callum Unger said, “Without access to this type of experience the course would be a lot more theory based. It helps to be on-farm access for the practical aspect, especially for the scientific elements to the course.”