Learning Lessons about Livestock and Life

Through her experience as an intern at UConn's livestock units, Hailey Kampton puts her love for animals of all sizes into practice

Smiling female student in front of horses

Hailey Kampton ‘24 (CAHNR) is spending her summer with some of UConn’s most esteemed residents – the animals in the livestock units in UConn’s Department of Animal Science.

Before coming to UConn, Kampton admits she was a beginner when it came to farm animals. Growing up on Long Island, New York, she had plenty of interaction with domestic pets, like cats and dogs. At UConn’s she’s had the opportunity for a totally different experience caring for horses, cows, and poultry.

“It’s been a really different experience for me because I did not grow up around livestock,” Kampton says.

Kampton began her summer working with the horses. During these first five weeks, Kampton fed and cleaned up after the animals. She also observed veterinary visits which included teeth cleaning and dressing wounds.

Learning about these beautiful animals was eye-opening, but Kampton says something else also stood out to her while working in the livestock units: the individual attention the staff pay the animals, knowing their personal health histories and personalities.

“It’s really inspiring and interesting to see how much everyone here cares for the animals,” Kampton says.

In the second part of her summer internship, Kampton works with poultry and sheep.

One of Kampton’s roles is sorting eggs into Grade A eggs to be sold and separating out any with shell abnormalities that, while still safe to eat, are less appealing for consumers.

At nights, Kampton has a separate position at the Kellogg Dairy Center where she works with UConn’s award-winning herd. There, she helps monitor when the cows were last milked, according to data collected from the Dairy Center’s robotic milking machines.

She also helps look after mother cows and their new-born calves.

Kampton says the hands-on experience she’s gaining from her summer internship is putting her education into practice and exposing her to future career paths. She is on the pre-veterinary track in the animal science major. While she was originally planning on becoming a veterinarian for companion animals, Kampton says she is now considering other options.

“Coming to UConn, it helped me to open my eyes because we have livestock animals for the students to work with here,” Kampton says.

Kampton says she is grateful for her internship experience this summer for giving her unique real-world experience with various kinds of livestock.

“I think it’s great that UConn has this internship program because it’s really nice to explore new things in a place I’ve already been for two years and am comfortable in,” Kampton says.


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