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Why Queen’s for Postgraduate Study - Marieke Fastovsky, MSc Animal Behaviour and Welfare

“Ultimately, my decision to move to Belfast and study at Queen’s came down to affordability, language compatibility, opportunity, and proximity to both my home in the US as well as to other countries.”

Front of Lanyon in the summer

What do you think are the benefits of a postgraduate degree?

There are many benefits to a postgraduate degree. In general, they tend to fall into the two categories of personal benefits or professional benefits. In terms of personal benefits, successfully pursuing a postgraduate degree enables the student to dive deeper into a subject they are passionate about and learn to focus their interests as well as critically think about them.

In terms of professional benefits, a postgraduate degree is a way to show employers that you are committed to hard work and have the diligence and discipline to become more knowledgeable in your desired field. Both of these are excellent reasons to challenge yourself to dig deeper and commit to a postgraduate degree.

Find out more about Marieke's course!

Why did you decide to pursue PG study?

I decided to pursue a postgraduate degree because I felt that I wanted to focus my interest from my undergraduate degree as well as gain experience in a research setting.

Additionally, I felt that by obtaining a postgraduate degree I would become a more desirable employee with an enhanced skill set. By choosing this master’s I had a chance to learn to navigate research design, learn to connect new concepts, and obtain real world experience in my field.

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What made Queen’s stand out from other universities during your initial research?

What made Queen’s stand out was that it was a Russell Group university as well as the layout of the master’s course. Being only about a year and a half long with the option of work placement or research built in, this course seemed like a good way to dive right in and gain proficiencies needed to succeed in my future career. 

Why did you ultimately decide to move to Belfast and study at Queen’s?

Ultimately, my decision to move to Belfast and study at Queen’s came down to affordability, language compatibility, opportunity, and proximity to both my home in the US as well as to other countries.


A student's guide to Belfast!

How has the Queen’s Graduate School supported your postgraduate journey?

The Graduate School has supported me by giving opportunities to engage with my peers through social events such as quiz and paint nights, as well as gave a place to conduct meetings and study in peace in the Silent Room. Additionally, The Graduate School has specific officers that check in with students and provide workshops that are targeted towards things like improving writing skills or interview readiness.

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How will your course at Queen’s help with your future career aspirations?

My course contributes to my future aspirations by equipping me with the tools to conduct research with integrity and thoughtfulness, as well as introducing me to others in my field that I can communicate with at a high academic level. By obtaining a master’s I also have a chance to show employers that I have taken the time to develop these skills and can be a valuable employee, thus increasing the number of jobs available to me. 

What kind of skills have you developed as a result of your course?

Skills I have developed include academic writing, computer competence such as excel and R coding, oral presentation capability, and communication adeptness in a variety of settings. 

Have you utilised any of the careers and employability services offered by Queen’s? If so, how have they helped to get you ‘future-ready’ following the completion of your degree?

I have chosen to be a course rep as well as a global student ambassador, both of which give me the opportunity to engage with others outside my programme in a professional and considerate way. These opportunities bolster the skills I develop in my programme and thus contribute to being ‘future-ready’, a target which is highlighted by the school in the ‘future- ready’ award system.

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USA: Admissions Guide

Postgraduate Study

Study Animal Behaviour and Welfare

Marieke Fastovsky

Animal Behaviour and Welfare | Postgraduate Student | USA

I am an MSc student here at Queen's University studying Animal Behaviour and Welfare. Before my time here I studied at my state university in the United States. My main areas of interest are in animal welfare for livestock and I love sharing about what I am learning with others!

When I am not studying I like baking, walking my dog and going out for a drink or a bite to eat.

Marieke Fatovsky