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Tanya’s roundabout route to success

April 12, 2019

Tanya Ruru can’t imagine living without her dogs Dozer and Irie.

It’s never too late to start a new career. Tanya Ruru for instance, took a roundabout route to become a veterinary nurse. After completing an accounting degree, 40-year-old Tanya worked in the profession for several years. It took some guts to eventually acknowledge that she did not enjoy it.

Through a friend who owned a funeral home business, Tanya became a funeral director. “I absolutely loved it. It was fulfilling and humbling,” she says.

The turning point, however, was her experience as a volunteer at the SPCA. “I cleaned the kennels and cuddled the animals but knew I wanted to do more for animals in need which meant I needed to know more.”

Studying the veterinary nursing diploma at EIT gave her access to that knowledge. As a mature student she had initial concerns about returning to tertiary study, but worked two jobs while studying full-time to accomplish her goal. In 2018 she was one of five recipients of the Otātāra Trust Scholarship.

During her final year she was employed by Clive Cottage Vet Clinic. “The knowledge set from studying and the skills gained at work paired together nicely.” Being offered a full-time position at the veterinary clinic was a happy end to her education story.

“My family has a history of taking in strays and rescuing animals, so it’s in my blood,” says Tanya about her love for animals. Her dogs Irie, Dozer, Royal and Diesel are her “babies”, she says, “they don’t expect me to be anyone but me. They are loyal regardless. They can be expensive and I often joke that I work just to feed my dogs, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.”