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    "I will forever be grateful for the opportunities that arose from studying at Harper Adams" says alumna Chloe

    21 March 2024

    Since leaving Harper Adams, BSc (Hons) Agriculture with Farm Business Management alumna Chloe Gimson secured a graduate role with real estate company Savills on their Food and Farming Graduate Scheme.

    Now working as a fully-fledged Food and Farming Consultant, she believes her experiences both at Harper Adams itself and during her industry placement year proved invaluable as she began her career, as her guest blog below sets out.

    Growing up on an outdoor breeding pig farm ignited my desire to work within the ever-evolving agricultural industry.

    Experience gained in various agricultural sectors prior to university gave me a flavour of future opportunities and ultimately led me to studying the subject at university.

    As soon as I stepped onto the Harper Adams campus at an Open Day, I knew this was where I wanted to study.

    The excellent facilities contained on one main campus alongside a working farm really drew me to study here. I could see that this was a place where you could thrive academically whilst also being able to gain practical skills and have an excellent social life. For me, the campus was the perfect size; big enough to be able to access a huge variety of facilities and excellent teaching staff but small enough to feel part of a supportive community.

    I started on the FdSc Agriculture course at Harper Adams in 2017 and after a successful first year I transferred to BSc Hons Agriculture with Farm Business Management. Having never worked with poultry previously, I undertook a placement year within the Technical Team at Banham Poultry, a fully integrated poultry company.

    I believe the compulsory placement year for all courses at Harper Adams is hugely valuable and helps you stand out against other applicants upon graduation. I was fortunate to be awarded two awards whilst on placement, for highest placement performance in a poultry placement and highest overall placement performance on the course. I was also honoured to be awarded two scholarships and was shortlisted as a finalist in both the Farmers Weekly and Farmers Guardian Agricultural Student of the Year Awards during my time at Harper.

    It was on my placement year that I realised that I really enjoyed report writing, advising clients, analysing data and financial planning, all skills that would be essential in a Farm Consultancy role. These skills combined with the knowledge that I had learnt on my course led me onto applying for Farm Consultancy roles during my final year.

    In 2021, I was delighted to accept an offer onto the Savills Food and Farming Graduate Scheme. Relocating to Oxford with no connections to the city was daunting but Harper Adams had prepared me well for dealing with this challenge. In 2023 I completed the Graduate Scheme to become a fully-fledged Food and Farming Consultant.

    My job is incredibly varied and consists of both management and consultancy work. I liaise with my clients on a day to day basis advising on various matters including farm budgeting, farm business analysis, environmental support schemes, farm diversification, natural capital and production systems. I also manage agreements on behalf of clients such as Contract Farming Agreements and Grazing Licences. The balance of being on farm and in the office is perfect for me and gives me the job variety I always desired.

    Beyond the day job, Savills has given me opportunities to be involved in various committees, a great work social life and allowed me to thrive in a role that I love. I will forever be grateful for the opportunities that arose from studying at Harper Adams, the lessons it taught me and the academic knowledge it gave me to begin my career in farm consultancy.

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