Borders College Animal Care students recently hooked up with Dr Balaji Chandrashekar from Mission Rabies, who spoke about how the organisation are helping to eradicate the deadly Rabies disease in India and further afield.
Delivered online from Bangalore, India, the aim of the sessions was to give the students an insight into the operations carried out by the organisation, relating to the health and disease work they undertake as part of their studies.
Operations Manager Dr Balaji talked in-depth about the disease and how it can be spread by a range of animals in different countries. He also talked about his work on infected animals, including testing and control measures.
He highlighted the mass vaccination programmes underway in the global rabies hotspots and the training being delivered to trainee animal health workers worldwide, with the ultimate goal of eliminating the disease in the future.
The students took a keen interest in the talk and were given the opportunity to put questions to Dr Balaji at the end of the session.
The link-up was organised by Curriculum and Learning Manager for Rural Skills, Mary Thomson, who met and worked with Dr Balaji in Thailand in 2018. She commented:
“This was an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about global One Health challenges, and to understand what working life is like in an animal care facility in India. It was also fantastic for staff to engage with international colleagues. From a personal perspective, I place great value on maintaining connections with international colleagues. I am looking forward to remaining regionally focussed while also maintaining and furthering global connections for our staff and student communities. I also hope that, when restrictions allow, we will be able to welcome Dr Balaji and his colleagues for a visit to our campus to learn more about our curriculum, community and sustainability projects.”
The staff and students finished off by thanking Dr Balaji for his input and there was talk around a possible exchange programme visit to India to carry out volunteering work through the Erasmus project. An exciting prospect for the students and Rural Skills Team.
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