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Rising employability rates highlight opportunities in the agricultural sector

Royal Agricultural University

The Royal Agricultural University is celebrating high employability figures across the board. Recent surveys of 2013 graduates have shown that 96.3% of undergraduates and 97.5% of postgraduates were in employment or further study within six months of leaving the RAU.

The official statistics for undergraduate students are produced for the annual national survey, organised by HESA (the Higher Education statistics Agency).  The survey focuses on UK graduates who studied full-time.

Students, it seems, are realising the endless career opportunities available for those with good agriculture degrees. The University has seen a huge rise in student numbers over the past five years. Since 2008, the total number of students enrolled at the RAU has increased by a staggering 49%. Recent graduates from the BSc (Hons) Agriculture degree have gone on to land key positions in all areas of the industry, from farm tenants and managers to occupations in agricultural insurance, journalism and finance, consultancy, countryside management, and advisory positions with government, international, and private organisations.

RAU graduate Katherine Meacham said: “The degree really set UK agriculture in a global context for me, and as a result I have been propelled into an amazing opportunity. I had four job offers before graduating, all in very different agricultural fields, and my degree from the RAU was fundamental in creating these opportunities.”

Information from the 2013 undergraduates also revealed that the majority (75%) had also secured more senior positions – classed as ‘professional or managerial roles’.

Graduates of postgraduate degree courses at the University also continue to be highly employable and the most recent statistics reveal 97.5% were in employment or further study six months after graduating. In fact, just 1.4% of graduates were still seeking work.

“We are very encouraged indeed by this latest survey” reports Professor W Paul Davies.

“The Royal Agricultural University is known, nationally and internationally, for good student employability following degree studies at Cirencester – and this reputation justly continues.  The applied nature of our courses; their relevance to the world of work, and the University’s continuing close links and connectivity to employers, through the efforts of our Careers service and academic staff, remain the key.

“Student employment six months after graduating has been high for very many years at the RAU – but the figures this year are particularly pleasing.”

The RAU, which was granted full university status in 2013, has continued to strengthen its reputation as a world-renowned provider of specialist education and research. It remains at the forefront of education relating to agriculture, food, agri-business, equine, and property and land management.

The RAU was ranked top in the UK last year for facilities spend, recognising its high investment and expenditure per student on staff and student facilities, including sports, careers services, health and welfare. The campus is also rated the safest in the South West (5th safest in the UK), and the University, which has a dedicated School of Business and Entrepreneurship, is in the top 10 universities in the UK for enterprise.

The University has seen applications and enrolments rise year on year. The RAU currently has more than 1,200 students, from over 45 different countries, studying on one of its 30 undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses.

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