As a former Harper Adams student (graduating with a 2:1 in 2010) I now look back on my choice of university with both fond memories and a strong sense of achievement.
The experience at Harper starts even before you arrive as a fresher. I visited two of the “HEC” conferences which gave a taste of Harper life during the UCAS application period – both of these visits further enforced my decision to come to Harper as being the right choice to make. I chose to study the BSc (Hons.) Agri-Food Marketing with Business Studies because I wanted to work in the food industry but wasn’t sure exactly in what capacity. My original expectations were to leave university in some sort of marketing/commercial role but from just the initial few months of varied lectures I was able to see a wider and more interesting set of options were available.
Without doubt the course content is first rate and you can clearly see that the lecturers at Harper have such a wealth of experience that translates into their lectures. The facilities are equally as fantastic with continual investment into the agri-food sector. While I was there we used the on-campus farm and lab facilities but also got chance to use the new food academy which was complete by the final year. Since then I keep checking up on the website and see millions and millions of pounds being invested to develop the facilities further – The new student SU being one of the extremely impressive additions.
One of the best things about the all the courses at Harper (as someone above mentioned) is the placement year in industry. I’m now writing this from Peru working as a Grape Technologist for a UK fruit importer supplying M&S and Tesco. The company I work for (MMUK, based in Cambridgeshire) offered a placement year where I got to see all aspects of their business and found the niche that I liked – the technical side. At the end of the year the company offered me a financial scholarship to return back to them with a guaranteed job once I graduated. In the difficult times graduates are currently having getting jobs I realise how invaluable this was – more so than the financial part!I now travel the world following the grape harvest from country to country. I know that I wouldn’t be in the position or have these opportunities if I had chosen anywhere other than Harper. I’m not the only person who will tell you this about Harper and its placement year – it’s a story the majority of my friends would tell you too.
I’ve talked a lot about the academic side but obviously uni life isn’t all about work!! The Harper campus and SU are fantastic at getting people involved. One of the things Harper prides itself on is the “Harper Spirit” which is difficult to describe in words until you first arrive at Harper in fresher’s week and see what it’s all about. Believe me when I say Harper students know how to work hard and they certainly know how to play hard!
The only thing I didn’t like about Harper, and I’m being serious here, was the fact I had to leave. Not a week goes by when I speak to my friends made at Harper without us reminiscing about times we had and how much we all want to go back – if that’s not an advocation for an amazing university college then I don’t know what is.