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HARPER ADAMS: Student Profile – Grace Evans

Grace Evans holding lamb
First year student, Grace Evans – who will be Harper Cymru’s vice-chairperson next year - tells us a little about her home in Montgomeryshire and what she’s been up to over the Easter holidays.

Dyma Grace Evans, myfyrwraig blwyddyn gyntaf, ac is-gadeirydd Harper Cymru blwyddyn nesaf, yn sôn am ei chartref a’i bywyi yn Sir Drefaldwyn…

It’s been the Easter break for students at Harper Adams over the last few weeks, a time for most students to return back home of course.

Who am I?

I am Grace Evans, I’m 18 years old and currently in my first year at Harper Adams studying BSc (Hons) Agriculture. Home is Pontrobert in Montgomeryshire, where we farm dairy and sheep and finish some beef from the dairy herd at 800ft above sea level. 

Why Harper?

I’ve always been interested in Agriculture and the surrounding countryside and have always taken an active role on the home farm. So, I always knew I wanted to study at Harper Adams (something my mother did 30 years ago!) with the intention of gaining a network of contacts, knowledge, and a highly recognised degree within the industry at the end of my course. I feel very lucky that one of the top Agricultural Universities in the country just happens to be 50 miles from home.

Which course at Harper? 

Uncertain about whether to choose Agriculture with Animal Science or Farm Business Management, I decided to start with straight Agriculture to find my preferences. As my first year at HAU draws to a close and I’ve settled and found my feet, I now intend to transfer to BSc Hons Agriculture with Farm Business Management for my second year as I’ve realised the importance of figures and money management since having a student loan! The option of transfer is something I particularly liked about the HAU course initially along with the fantastic rural setting and student lifestyle offered.

After Harper plans?

I feel Harper will prepare me for my eventual return home to farm within the ever-changing agricultural industry, but beforehand, I’m looking forward to some travel to learn more about agricultural systems and practices across the UK and other countries and working within the industry – in which sector – I’m still undecided at this stage.

During the Easter break

Easter has mainly involved chasing sheep and lambs! Which has been a delight this week in the cold wintery weather. We lamb indoors starting at the beginning of March, so by the time Harper broke for Easter, Dad was pleased to see me home to help with the night shifts, and milking in particular. I’ll be glad to get back to Harper for a rest and enjoy some social time again!

I also attended my YFC club quiz and curry night where we were raising money for a trip to compete in the National Entertainment Competition held at Leamington Spa on the 22nd and 23rd of April, after Llanfyllin YFC won the Montgomeryshire entertainment festival and came second in the Welsh festival at Bangor in March. Unfortunately, I couldn’t be in the production this year due to being at university during the week, however, I will be cheering them on from the milking parlour!

Interests at Harper and Home

Since starting at Harper, I’ve been an active member of the rowing club and Harper Cymru, I enjoy all aspects of both clubs from the social side to keeping fit. Both clubs allow some healthy downtime from study and are excellent ways of meeting and socialising with students from different courses. I try and complete my work during the week before returning back over the border on the weekends, to enjoy catching up with friends, working on the farm, and competing in YFC competitions. 

Future of Harper Cymru

In the new academic year, I am looking forward to taking on the role of vice chairman. One of our first events is the Cardiff half marathon on the 1st of October (which I need to start training for!) and we will be raising money for DPJ Foundation a charity for everyone in rural communities. My main aim as vice will be to encourage freshers to join the society by ensuring Harper Cymru has a full and interesting itinerary of trips and social events throughout the year, as I feel this is an important part of networking and opening opportunities whilst at university within the industry we are studying.

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