Hartpury College in Gloucestershire remains a top choice for agriculture education as student numbers rise again, figures show.
Hartpury College is hailing a bumper crop of agriculture student enrolments, with enrolments up by over 17% on the previous year.
Over 400 students there are studying agriculture, land-based technology or countryside management through a diploma or apprenticeship in the subject area.
In addition to an increase in overall student numbers, the department has also seen an increase in female agriculture students.
Claire Whitworth, deputy principal at Hartpury, said the college was 'thrilled' to see more students opting for a career in the agricultural sector.
“It’s great to see an increasing number of students from a non-farming background pursuing a career in agriculture, as well as seeing more female students taking advantage of the growing opportunities that now exist.
“We’ve invested heavily in our agri-tech facilities during recent years. These facilities, combined with high-quality teaching and close co-operation with business, make us a beacon for agriculture education.”
Hartpury’s 360-hectare estate is home to a commercial farm that supplies big industry names, such as Müller, as well as a £2 million agricultural technology centre.
The further education college also includes 400 hectares of arable land across five sites, designed to help students build a technical skillset.
It comes after agricultural educator Janet Swadling, who heads the skills body the Institute for Agriculture and Horticulture (TIAH), was awarded an OBE in the King’s New Year Honours list 2023 for services to farming and education.
The chair of Scotland's Rural College (SRUC) was also honoured for services to Scottish farming and business.