Recent Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management graduate, Alexandra, has always felt a connection to the natural world.

“I grew up on the land and have been brought up with a deep love and respect for the environment. Through annual holidays to the coast, my upbringing also fostered a great love for the marine environment,” Alexandra said.

After choosing to transition into tertiary study straight after high school, Alexandra fell in love with the sound of a Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management at the University of Newcastle.

“At the time, this degree was the only environmental science degree that offered a marine science major.

“I also chose to study at the University of Newcastle as it offers so many wonderful natural classrooms to work within. These included the beautiful beaches, stunning coastal rock platforms, and intertidal wetland habitats,” she said.

Alexandra also had many great practical experiences including laboratory and fieldwork opportunities as part of both Work Integrated Learning and voluntary opportunities.

“During these experiences I have used a range of fieldwork equipment that is commonly used in the environmental sector including a Horiba for water analyses, Elliot traps, arboreal mammal traps, harp traps, cameras, and Anabats (bat detectors),” she said.

One of Alexandra’s volunteering opportunities included monitoring the endangered Green and Golden Bell Frog on Kooragang Island. This role involved researching population fluctuations and movement patterns.

During this time, Alexandra was fortunate enough to receive a Summer Scholarship with the Conservation Biology Group to help support her continued voluntary work with the group.

Other volunteering opportunities saw Alexandra working with sugar gliders, marine and freshwater invertebrates, and flora identifications. She also completed a virtual internship with the University of Malaysia. This experience saw her work with two Malaysian academics to investigate the growing use of plant-based therapeutics.

The hands-on approach of the Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management allowed Alexandra to feel confident and job ready.

“I seriously believe the University of Newcastle’s focus on work integrated learning among degree program plans is vital in ensuring we not only graduate with a great qualification, but we are also confident and experienced in the tasks we will be required to do in our future careers.

“The University of Newcastle has helped prepare me for a successful career by providing me with great practical skills and great knowledge to tackle a role in the very broad spectrum of entry-level environmental jobs,” Alexandra said.

Since graduating, Alexandra has already started working in the field.

“I’m working as an ecologist, which I acquired from my work placement experience at Umwelt environmental and social consultancy,” she said.

“I am absolutely loving the company's culture and the work itself which involves both fieldwork and office-based components”.

Study a Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management

Alexandra Cottle smiling in a lab coat next to a microscope

Alexandra Cottle

Alexandra fell in love with the sound of a Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management at the University of Newcastle.

I seriously believe the University of Newcastle’s focus on Work Integrated Learning among degree program plans is vital in ensuring we not only graduate with a great qualification, but we are also confident and experienced in the tasks we will be required to do in our future careers.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.