An animal management student has won a battle with her college to skip the module on farming - because she's vegan.

Fiji Willetts, 18, says she enrolled on the course after reading it was "great for people who love animals" in the college prospectus.

But she was soon devastated when she found out she had to complete a module on farm husbandry - including working on a farm and possibly visiting an abattoir.

The vegan of four years claims tutors at South Gloucestershire and Stroud College said skipping the unit would result in an "automatic fail".

The animal lover claims she was told she could alternatively leave the college or enroll on another course.

Worried a fail would scupper her chances of going to uni - but unwilling to study raising animal for food - she turned to "vegan rights advocates" for help.

And after numerous complaints, she's finally been told she can do a "more suitable" module instead.

Fiji, from Downend, Bristol, said: “I am vegan because I love animals, so to attend a farm where I would be supporting a farmer would be wrong.

“I would have been denied a college education.

“I couldn’t simply break my way of living purely to pass a course.

“I hope I can now be an example to other vegans so they don’t have to go through the ordeal I went through.”

But after enrolling, she discovered she had to take and pass, a module on farm husbandry - the branch of agriculture which focuses on raising animals for products.

Students were expected to attend working farms and a slaughterhouse visit was also discussed, according to the Vegan Society, which supported Fiji's claim.

Fiji started suffering with anxiety and raised concerns with her tutor, but was told she had to complete the module or fail, the society claims.

She submitted a formal complaint to the college, which maintained a substitute module was not available, it is claimed.

A similar complaint was issued to the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA), who supported the college.

But the case was escalated to the awarding body for non-compliance with equality law, and college tutors finally changed their minds.

Five months after the start of Fiji’s claim, they have agreed to provide "a more suitable module" for her to complete at the college in Filton, Bristol.

Jeanette Rowley, vegan rights advocate at The Vegan Society, said: “I’m delighted Fiji was able to stay at her college and continue working towards her diploma.

“This was a really big win for Fiji, and for the vegan movement.

“Education providers have a duty to be inclusive and must do everything they can to remove any disadvantages faced by vegans.

“There is an urgent need to assess the approach taken to teaching students about nonhuman animals and the way they are treated.

“Vegans in the UK have the protection of human rights and equality law, and it is vital that schools and colleges understand that they are under a statutory duty to examine how their educational policies and practices might have a negative impact on vegan students.”

Sara-Jane Watkins, College Principal of South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, issued a statement concerning Fiji Willetts.

It states the college ''made every effort to explain'' the module in question was a ''holistic and well-rounded programme''.

The statement says the college ''acted to reassure FW, and her parents, that the unit had been ethically planned''.

They said the course has the ''highest regard for animal welfare'', would not have ''disregarded FW’s beliefs'' and ''she would not be expected to undertake any activity with which she was uncomfortable''.

The statement said she was told she ''could opt out of all or some of Unit 19 if she so wished'' and she was offered the option of another unit.

Their statement claims she was not told she had to study the module in question but was was ''encouraged to do so because of its usefulness to the local economy''.

They said she ''wanted the change to A levels but was too late'' and claim ''FW has never been told to drop out''.

It says it provided ''careers advice'' and ''alternatives to either opt out of some or all of unit 19 or study an alternative unit''.

They said Fiji ''would never have failed as she has stated unless she opted out of unit 19 and didn't study an alternative''.

They also said she failed to ''respond to any of our formal correspondence or efforts to reach out''.

They added that the Equality and Human Rights Commission rules means the college is ''not restricted in the range of issues, ideas, and materials you use in your syllabus and will have the academic freedom to expose students to a range of thoughts and ideas, however controversial''.