Harper Adams University College
Sunday 01 July 2012
Harper Adams University College
History: Harper Adams was opened in 1901 as an agricultural college. Thomas Harper Adams, a local landowner bequeathed his estate 'for the purpose of teaching practical and theoretical agriculture'. In 1996 it began to award its own taught degrees and in 1998 was re-named, dropping 'agricultural' and acquiring 'university'. In 2006, Harper Adams was granted research degree awarding powers.
Address: Rural Shropshire, two miles from the market town of Newport.
Ambience: Quiet and bucolic, as befits a university college with its roots in the land. Has the famous 'Harper community spirit'. Traditional red-brick Edwardian main building, but state-of-the-art modern learning facilities including the Bamford library and resource centre, teaching rooms, labs and halls of residence.
Vital statistics: The leading UK provider of land-based qualifications in higher education sector, it has 4,000 students, with around 2,200 on undergraduate and postgraduate courses. The male to female ratio is 55:45.
Added value: An outstanding graduate employment record, perhaps thanks to its excellent links with companies such as John Deere, JCB, Marks & Spencer, Tesco and the National Trust. Good careers support service. All Harper Adams undergraduate courses include a work placement period of 12 months, to help students put theory into practice. There's the Aspire Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, as well as a modern resource centre and engineering design centre. The Centre for Rural Innovation is also based at Harper Adams. Large playing fields, sports hall and tennis courts. High staff to student ratio.
Easy to get into? Degrees ask for between 220 and 300 UCAS points, with certain courses asking for previous qualifications in specific subjects, such as biology, as a prerequisite.
Glittering alumni: Representatives in both the agricultural and food industries. Tony Pexton, former Vice-President of the National Farmers' Union, studied there.
Transport links: Car comes in handy. Public transport is available - you take the bus to Newport, Telford or Shrewsbury. Local train stations are Telford, which is 10 miles away, or Stafford.
Who's the boss? Dr David Llewellyn took over as principal in 2009.
Teaching: In the National Student Survey 2010, the university scored 85 per cent for student satisfaction. The QAA expressed confidence in Harper Adams and identified areas of good practice in last year's institutional audit.
Research: In the Research Assessment Exercise, the university achieved an average rating of 1.95, with more than three quarters of research output falling into the 2* and 3* ranking.
Nightlife: The Students’ Union runs live music events and hosts at least four balls per year - with a very grand summer ball. Newport, Stafford and Shrewsbury are all within easy reach. The nearest cinema is inTelford.
How green is it? Much of the campus heating is generated by alternative methods of energy, such as solar panels and a biomass generator. Most food served on site travels from the college farm or from businesses within 20 miles of the campus. A new £3m renewable energy system based on anaerobic digestion is anticipated to offset campus carbon emissions more than three times over.
Any accommodation? High-quality on-campus residences. A single study bedroom inclusive of all weekday meals with laundry delivered to your door costs between £115 and £147 per week. Self-catering college accommodation will set you back between £75 and £106 per week.
Cheap to live there? Yes. Local rented accommodation costs roughly £65 per week excluding utility bills.
Fees: UK and EU full-time undergrads starting courses in 2012 will be charged the maximum cost of £9,000 per year. International students will pay a higher annual fee of £9,650 per year.
Bursaries: There is a long list of competitive scholarships offered by the university. In 2012 through the National Scholarship Programme, Harper Adams will offer 50 non-repayable awards of £3,000 to students from low income families. For more details, visit the university's funding pages.
Prospectus: 01952 820280; www.harper-adams.ac.uk
UCAS code: H12
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