(At this point I would hope that most of you said I-O)
It is now day 3 here on the U.K. study abroad trip and I think I can speak on behalf of all of us from OSU, it has been absolutely amazing. After we have all adjusted to the 5 hour time difference, we were ready to dive into today’s adventure: Writtle University.
We started our journey to Writtle University at 8:30 this morning. Upon arrival we met Jane Hart and Hannah who were generous enough to give us the tour. She explained how the university represented a clock face where 12 o’clock was the Equine Facility, 3 o’clock was the K9 Unit, and 6 o’clock was the labs & offices. Our first stop was the livestock facility where they housed sheep, cattle, and pigs. There we met up with Katie who ran the operations out there. She proceeded to tell us all about their crop production and how hard Brexit was going to hit the farmers.
We took a quick glance at the sheep barn where there was about 10 sheep in a pen. Although we didn’t see many sheep there, Hannah told us that they had roughly 150 ewes and 300 lambs for this season.
Our next stop was the beef facility. The first thing we saw was the handling facility which was designed by Temple Grandin (who ironically designed the beef handling facility at OSU ATI). We were able to observe 2 pens of Red Poll beef cattle which Hannah described to be the equivalent to our red angus beef cattle. The first pen was weaned 2 year olds and the second was bulls.
We ventured a little farther into the property where we met James. James is in charge of the swine facility for Writtle University. Although he has only been working here a year and a half, he has been working with swine his entire life. Those who chose to do so got dressed in orange jumpsuits and white boots and started the tour. The first building we went into was the farrowing facility where we had the opportunity to see piglets just several hours old. James continued the tour to the weaning pens, then lastly the sow pens. On behalf of my self and a few other student we really enjoyed being able to have a personal one-on-one interaction with him and talk about all the similarities and differences between how the U.S.A. and the U.K. operated.
Our last tour of the university was at their Equine Facility, where we met up with Jane and Penny who talked about the operations. Right away you could tell that out of all the livestock, equine was one of their most prized animal. The facilities, which included: handling facility, arena’s, paddocks, and veterinary equine therapy facility were absolutely amazing. Some of the buildings were brand new facilities which were very well maintained. We were able to meet rescue horses as well as 2 of their stallions. After finishing up at the Equine unit we went back to the student cafeteria where they served us a very, very good lunch.
After arriving at the hotel, shortly after a group of us ventured out to do self tours of London. Some of our stops consisted of Buckingham Palace (THE QUEEN WAS HOME), the London Eye, and lastly Westminster Abbey. We certainly figured out our way around the tube after today.
PSA to Parents, Family, and Friends:
Without any of you we wouldn’t be able to experience this once in a lifetime opportunity. We know it may not have been easy on you guys but we can not show enough appreciation for everyone who supported us on this journey. We may not be able to talk to everyday but on behalf of all of us. We miss you. We love you. We will see you soon.
Piglets just hours old
Jane talking about the equine facility
Students observing the beef cattle
The London Eye