Farming News - NFU Mutual launches national award for postgraduate agricultural students

NFU Mutual launches national award for postgraduate agricultural students

27 Jan 2021
Frontdesk / Arable / Livestock

NFU Mutual’s annual Centenary Award is now open for applications. The award provides bursaries to pay up to 75% of course fees for selected students who are undertaking a postgraduate course in agriculture (Masters or PhD) within the UK.   

The Centenary Award was created by the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust in 2010 to celebrate NFU Mutual’s 100th birthday, with the objective of creating a legacy for the future. To date, 43 agricultural students have received bursaries to help further their studies.

The award is open to individuals who have gained, or are expected to gain, a 2:1 or above in agriculture or a related degree, and have been accepted or provisionally accepted on a Masters or PhD course in agriculture in the UK, in autumn 2021.

The NFU Mutual Charitable Trust has identified three topics of interest for eligible students. At least one of these areas must form part of the applicant’s postgraduate course: sustainable agriculture and climate change; international agricultural development; the application of science and innovative technology to the agricultural industry.

To select the students, the judging panel will be looking for applicants who are not only excellent academic performers, but also have a real passion for agriculture and demonstrate potential to become a future industry leader.

Talking about the scheme, Jim McLaren, NFU Mutual Chairman, said: “Our Centenary Award aims to support outstanding agricultural students as they grow to lead the next generation of farmers. These young people are the future of our industry and, by giving them an opportunity to continue their studies, we hope we can help them make a difference not only to themselves but also within our farming and rural communities.”

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Elin Havard, from Powys, was one of three postgraduate agricultural students to receive the Centenary Award bursary in 2020, helping fund her MBA Innovation in Sustainable Food and Agriculture at the Royal Agricultural University in Cirencester.

Elin’s passion for farming began at a young age, and she explained how the bursary is supporting her aspirations. She said: “Having grown up on a beef and sheep farm, my interest in agriculture was instilled in me as a child. I relish this opportunity to further my understanding and gain the skills required to contribute positively to the future of our industry.”

Prospective postgraduate students who think they may be eligible to apply for the Centenary Award in 2021 should contact centenary_award@nfumutual.co.uk to request further details and an application form. 

The closing date for the 2021 award is 30th April. Information about the scheme, along with an application form, can be found on the NFU Mutual website: www.nfumutual.co.uk