You don’t have to be from a farming background to study agriculture at Bridgwater & Taunton College’s Cannington campus.
In fact, its students come from a variety of backgrounds and locations.
Not only do the College’s agriculture and land management courses give students the practical skills to manage livestock and crops, they also deepen knowledge and understanding of agriculture in the broader sense by exploring the environmental impact of farming and ways to improve techniques.
The College has invested heavily in agriculture and food resources, and offers students the opportunity to put theory into practice and gain valuable experience in livestock, crops and machinery.
It also ensures work experience and employment opportunities are embedded into every course to prepare students for the world of work.
Students have been busy…
The autumn cultivations have been completed, including ploughing, power harrowing and maize harvesting by mechanisation. Each student carried out tasks that played to their strengths and at commercial work rates.
Rodway Young Farmers Club is based at the College and run by Level 3 second year agriculture students (with some staff support). Regular meetings are held to plan activities within the Somerset Young Farmers’ Federation.
A sponsored Grass to Maize event is being planned again this year. The challenge is to complete all cultivations within 24 hours and exceed the £2,000 raised for charity last April.
Second year students have been supervising the first years to gain farm supervisory experience. Their excellent assessment marks are highly valued by industry and supports university applications.
Our outstanding link with St Lo, a college based in France, continues to grow from strength to strength. We host their students for one year while they study Food Manufacture & Management at our Agriculture Innovation Centre and Food Tech Labs. This allows the French and UK students to exchange knowledge and retention rates are 100%.
Excellent opportunities continue to develop through links with livestock breed societies. Students regularly show livestock at events such as the Devon County and Bath & West.
In January, an informative careers day was attended by all first years. Employers explained what they look for in their staff and students reported that they found the day very interesting and motivating.
The College also hosted engaging and successful industry days. Companies such as Hambley’s, Shepton Vets and Somerset Wildlife ran bespoke training sessions and brought state-of-the-art equipment to further develop knowledge and understanding of their sectors.
Kier Group also helped Level 1 students design and evaluate an ecology survey to reinforce their understanding of how farming links to environmental science.
The College held another excellent Lambing Fun Day where students studying both agriculture and food technology were a major part of the planning and execution of the event.
One of the second year Level 3 students has been awarded First for Junior Member of the Year – Rodway Young Farmers Club, and therefore qualified for the NFYFC finals at County Showground in Stafford.
To learn more about Agriculture courses at Bridgwater and Taunton College, click here.