Top veterinary role for NI’s Philip
Broughshane man and former DAERA veterinary officer, Dr Philip Robinson, has been appointed head of the new veterinary health and animal sciences department at Harper Adams University in Shropshire.
Dr Robinson brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to his new post as a veterinarian, researcher and academic leader. Raised on a beef suckler farm in the picturesque village near Ballymena, he is a former pupil of Ballymena Academy and a graduate of the University of Glasgow, University of London and Durham University.
Shortly after he first joined Harper Adams University as a senior lecturer in 2015, he became the first ever RCVS Recognised Specialist in State Veterinary Medicine, before going on to promotion as principal lecturer in farm animal health and welfare. Having taken a short break from the Shropshire University to work as a senior lecturer in veterinary public health at the University of Glasgow, Dr Robinson returned to Harper Adams in September just as it launched the UK’s ninth vet school in partnership with Keele University.
He will work alongside the vet school leadership team to ensure veterinary nursing, veterinary physiotherapy and veterinary medicine students train together and develop the professional networks they will need in practice.
Speaking recently, Dr Robinson said that he was ‘honoured’ to lead the new department:
‘The opening of the new Veterinary Education Centre as part of the Harper & Keele Veterinary School offers fantastic new facilities and equipment for training veterinary nursing and veterinary physiotherapy students from my department,’ he added. ‘Additionally, there are excellent opportunities for inter-professional education and research collaboration between all of the different disciplines in animal health and welfare represented at the university.’
Dr Robinson, has enjoyed an extensive teaching and research career in farm animal health and welfare as well as veterinary public health. After qualifying as a veterinary surgeon from the University of Glasgow, he worked in private veterinary practice in Northern Ireland and Scotland before spending more than a decade as a field veterinary officer and epidemiologist with the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) in Northern Ireland.
As well as his impressive work record, Dr Robinson is also a Diplomate of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in State Veterinary Medicine and holds the MSc degree in Veterinary Epidemiology and Public Health (with Distinction) from the Royal Veterinary College, University of London.
In 2010, Dr Robinson was awarded a Northern Ireland Civil Service US-UK Fulbright Scholarship at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Mississippi State University to conduct research on factors affecting diagnostic sample submission to veterinary laboratories. Completing his PhD in the geography department of Durham University, Dr Robinson’s thesis researched factors affecting bovine tuberculosis eradication efforts in Northern Ireland.
Dr Robinson is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy as well as serving as the Honorary Secretary of the Society for Veterinary Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine (SVEPM) and as a senior editor of the scientific journal Annals of Applied Biology. His main research interests include farm animal infectious diseases, veterinary epidemiology, veterinary public health, and veterinary education. He currently supervises a number of PhD students whose research uses social science methodologies to investigate health and welfare issues in livestock.