A NEWLY qualified animal medicines adviser fought off competition from almost 1,000 other students to scoop the top prize at a prestigious awards ceremony.

Stephanie Batehup, who works at Carrs Billington’s Longtown and Carlisle Country Store branches, was honoured at the Animal Medicines Training Regulatory Authority (AMTRA) Awards for the best performing students.

Stephanie came top in the all-species category, gaining the Simon Fleet Cup sponsored by Zoetis, and then from the four categories was the top overall student and winner of the AHDA Cup sponsored by Elanco. She was presented with her two trophies at the 35th Animal Health Distributors Association conference gala dinner in Birmingham.

After passing her studies, Stephanie is now an SQP or Suitably Qualified Person, meaning she has the required professional expertise to prescribe a range of veterinary medicines.

Stephanie is now putting her training to good use coming up with solutions for farmers, equine owners and pet lovers all looking for the best care for their animals.

Stephanie, who also has a First in Applied Animal Sciences, said: “It was very exciting and it’s always good to be recognised for the effort you’ve put in.

“The best part of the job is we get people coming in and telling us about what’s happening with their animals or on their farms. It’s all about the communication with those customers.”

Carlisle and Longtown branch Manager Paul Dinsdale said: “We are really pleased for Steph, the hard work of our Registered Animal Medicine Advisers is testament to our core values of quality, trust, respect and integrity, providing tailor-made solutions for our valued customer base.”