The value of a Harper Adams degree has been underlined by an alumna who has secured a top role at firm she first encountered doing pre-University work experience.
Caroline Horn, a BSc (Hons) Rural Enterprise and Land Management graduate from Richmond in North Yorkshire, chose to do some work experience before university to see if the land and property sector was right for her.
This experience was at Residential, Commercial, Development and Rural property specialists George F White at their Bedale office.
She explained: “I started out doing some work experience to see what I enjoyed. I knew I wanted to have a job in the rural industry as I am a farmer’s daughter. I first carried out some work experience at George F. White and shadowed a surveyor who is still in the firm. This then sparked my interest in rural chartered surveying.
“I started researching relevant degrees and universities. The placement year that Harper Adams offer swayed it for me – I’ve always said learning on the job and having a good base of work experience is invaluable when starting your career”.
Following her work experience, Caroline made her way to Harper, completing her placement year with Carter Jonas in Harrogate, she then returned to Harper Adams before graduating in 2015 with a First-Class Honours degree. She began her career with George F White, where she applied her studies and started to build her career in property – eventually securing her current position.
She explained: “I am one of nine equity partners here at GFW, and I am the first female chartered surveyor to join the Partnership which I’m very proud of.”
“This is definitely one of my career highlights along my career so far. After I graduated from Harper Adams, I joined GFW working with and learning from some of the best surveyors in the North East. I am lucky as I really enjoy my job and the clients I work with which has enabled me to progress through the company and become a partner in May of this year.
“I completed my second year of APC training with George F. White which was fantastic as it is a multi-disciplinary firm which really supported the APC. I was and still am involved in strategic estate management and general practice work including Landlord and Tenant matters and Compulsory Purchase work.
Having chosen Harper Adams for the experience that its placement year offered, Caroline remains a keen advocate.
She added: “In my opinion, there’s nothing more relevant than doing a placement year; no one can teach in a classroom how you deal with different circumstances and commonly quite challenging circumstances, how to negotiate and to manage numerous projects and a team around you.
“Now being on the other side of the coin, actively looking to employing work experience students and graduates into our business, I look for candidates that have appropriate and related work experience.
Caroline also added that she has made some true friendships that she knows will last a lifetime but also recognises that students and contacts from Harper Adams allows you to build an extensive network in the industry that helps and supports your career.
For those considering a career in land management and property, or pursuing a qualification, Caroline is keen to stress that the sector offers a wealth of opportunities. It is an evolving, forward- facing industry with exciting prospects to pursue a career within.
She added: “The industry is going through the biggest changes it has ever seen. Meaning it is a really exciting industry to work within but also an industry where there is a strong demand for property experts. We need more surveyors to keep up with the demand for our services and I would hope my journey would inspire younger people to join the Rural industry.
“There are so many new markets to explore, new and upcoming legislations and we have a chance to be part of that and make a real impact in the industry.
“Ultimately, it’s a great industry to be a part of, you see some amazing parts of the countryside. I particularly enjoy building relationships with clients to become part of their trusted team of advisors which is then so rewarding when you can see how your advice has impacted their businesses”.