- Charles Sturt graduate obtains prestigious first job in chosen industry
- Graduate currently working for Thoroughbred Racing Northern Territory
- New role supports retired racehorses
The first job in her chosen industry since graduating from Charles Sturt University for Ms Ella Baird has been nothing short of an adventure so far.
Ms Baird graduated from a Bachelor of Equine Science (with specialisations) from Charles Sturt’s School of Agricultural, Environmental and Veterinary Sciences in Wagga Wagga in 2020.
COVID-19 ruined her plans to work overseas in the horse industry, so she took some time to find the perfect job in her chosen field in Australia.
It was worth the wait as she is currently working at Thoroughbred Racing Northern Territory (TRNT) in equine welfare and racing administration.
“I was tentative to apply as the position is located in Darwin and I was worried about the relocation … but the job was so intriguing I had to get more information,” she said.
“Four weeks later, I packed up my car and drove on my own from the Gold Coast to Townsville and across to Darwin.”
Ms Baird looks after the development of Off The Track, an initiative established in 2019 to support the retirement of racehorses. She is responsible for using allocated funds to provide trainers with travel subsidy, or a care package of Hygain, which includes bags of feed and nutritional support.
She is responsible for liaising with trainers and processing information in Racing Australia’s national database to ensure current and accurate information is available for race books on race day.
Ms Baird also functions as a swabbing attendant, where she assists the vets with pre-race blood samples and post-race horse inspections and urine samples.
She said Charles Sturt gave her the skills, knowledge, appropriate work placement and confidence necessary to pursue this dream role.
“I developed an interest in equine welfare because of Associate Professor Hayley Randle, her passion for equine welfare is infectious,” she said.
“I found myself reconsidering so many things I thought I knew about horses.
“What I learned at Charles Sturt University has definitely transferred into the way I work.”
Professor Randle said it was always exciting for educators to see students putting their knowledge to use.
She said the industry-focussed Bachelor of Equine Science will allow Ms Baird to make a difference in her field.
“At Charles Sturt University, we are very pleased to see Ella’s appointment to this prestigious industry role,” she said.
“Ella will be able to apply many aspects of her equine science education, from nutrition and health management, to rehabilitation, to equitation science, training, and welfare.
“I am excited to see the positive outcomes of Ella’s appointment.”
Ms Baird has big plans for her new role, including providing owners with more education and resources through Off The Track, improving the care packages to include more products and providing a safety net for at-risk horses by developing stronger relationships in the industry.