Volunteer Profile

Thomas Kent, 1st Year BSc Zoology with Study Aboard

 What volunteering have you been involved with (FXU or other)?
I have mainly been involved in volunteering through FXU community action and EcoSoc.  A lot of the volunteering I have done has been practical conservation days, working with a whole variety of different organisations from the Looe Monkey Sanctuary to Lost Gardens of Heligan. On a range of activities including charcoal making, coppicing and habitat clearance for butterflies. The Ecosoc events have been activities like stream and beach cleans as well as helping out on days too enthuse the community about biodiversity around them like BioBlitz.

What motivates you to volunteer?
I think there’s a lot of good reasons to volunteer. Firstly moving 360 miles to university means you don’t know a lot of places around you, so volunteering has been a great way to visit more of Cornwall. It’s also a good way to learn new skills which you wouldn’t typically get from just your course and is a chance to meet new people from both universities in all years. Additionally, it gives you the opportunity to take a break from the academic side of University and enjoy the outdoors. Finally, I think it’s just really rewarding to see the difference you have made in the day to an area you been working on!

What have you take away from volunteering whilst at University?
I have gained a sense of achievement and pride in completing the different activities and made new friends through volunteering. The experiences and skills I have gained from volunteering is also something I can use on my CV for the future and contribute to gaining the Exeter Award. Volunteering is something everyone should do whilst at University if they get the chance and FXU make volunteering opportunities accessible for all.