I studied Sociology and English to Honours BA level at University College Cork. During this time, I was awarded a College Scholar award for high achievement. Graduating into the global recession of 2008 steered me into full-time work but I returned to education to study Veterinary Nursing to Advanced Diploma level in 2009.
Qualified as a veterinary nurse, I have experience working with various individuals, from dogs, cats and foxes to cows and horses. I have also worked in the Education Centre in Fota Wildlife Park, Cork where I worked with human and nonhuman individuals. I continuously sought to work with nonhuman animals but simultaneously I was eager to learn, to write and to challenge myself academically. This desire to harmonise an appreciation for nonhuman animals and my academic aspirations led to my enrolment on the MA in Anthrozoology with the University of Exeter in 2014.
As a distance learner, I studied part-time for two years while teaching full-time. I wrote articles discussing a wide variety of anthrozoological topics; exploring nonhuman personhood and agency, transbiopolitics of Ebola and queer animals. Under the supervision of both Dr. Samantha Hurn and Dr. Julien Dugnoille, I developed a confident and considerate voice which challenged cultural constructions of nonhuman animals. During the MA, I have undertaken ethnographic fieldwork which explored the emotionality of animal slaughter. Furthermore, I successfully published a paper on homosexual animals in Ireland and presented my paper at the Animal/Human Bond Conference held in Mansfield College, University of Oxford.
I have continued an incredible affiliation with the University of Exeter in September 2016 when I embarked on the MRes in Science and Technology Studies which has progressed into an ESRC-funded PhD in Sociology, as detailed in Slaughterhouse Culture.