There are numerous universities to choose between when it comes to a career in the food and drink industry, with many institutions now offering food and drink courses. Deciding upon which university to study at is one of the most significant stages in achieving your perfect career.
The University of Reading
Located in the ceremonial county of Berkshire, the University of Reading is home to over 17,000 students. The university has been offering higher education to students since 1926 and is now spread over 3 campuses all around the town of Reading. Whiteknights campus is the largest out of the 3 sites, with 130 hectares of land for students to enjoy. The main campus is where all food and nutrition degrees are taught, giving students the best possible opportunity to make the most of their time at university. The University of Reading also conserves four museums, along with a range of libraries and also a botanical garden. The Whiteknights library contains over 1.2 million books, of which students can browse at their own leisure.
The university prides itself on employability records, with 94% of their graduates from all degrees being in work or further study within 6 months of graduating. In addition to this impressive statistic, The Guardian has recently ranked the University of Reading at 25th in the UK in the 2016 rankings, moving up 5 places since 2015.
Why choose Reading?
The borough of Reading has a population of 155,698 and the town forms the largest part of the area. Reading is a large town in southern England, located only 20 minutes away from London via train. All 3 of the University campus’ are within easy walking distance from local train stations, of which have direct links to many major cities including Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow. This gives students easy access for getting to and from Reading town centre, allowing them to explore the city, as well as return home at weekends and during the holidays.
Reading is the host of the annual Reading Festival, which takes place over August bank holiday weekend. The festival is the world’s oldest popular music festival in existence and is also said to be one of the biggest of its kind in the UK. In 2014 the headliner acts included Blink-182 as well as the Artic Monkeys.
The city of Reading is also home to Championship side Reading Football Club, whose stadium has a capacity of 24,161, bringing many home and away fans to the town most weeks. Reading is also a hub for rugby union, with the Aviva Premiership team London Irish also sharing the same stadium as the Football Club. Having a town filled with sport creates a fun, spirited atmosphere for students of all ages to settle into and spend their spare time doing something other than studying!
Student life at Reading University
Students who attend the University of Reading are fortunate enough to have a well looked after Student’s Union, which is an organisation run by students, for the students. The Student’s Union maintains and looks after many of the buildings around campus, including shops, bars, nightclubs and cafes.
Two popular places for students to gather in the evenings are the Mojo’s Bar and 3Sixty- both organisations run by the Student’s Union. The Mojo’s Bar is a relaxed area where students can gather for food and drink, as well as evening entertainment organised by Student Officers. 3Sixty on the other hand is one of the largest nightclubs in Reading, situated on your own doorstep. The 2,000 capacity venue has hosted several well-known acts, including Professor Green and Tinie Tempah.
The Student’s Union is also home to a huge range of societies and clubs in which students can join. There are over 150 clubs within the University, 50 of which are sport related. The University of Reading welcomes students of all abilities to play sport, they are able to choose to play for fun, socially or compete in inter-university leagues and tournaments. The University of Reading are also proud to have had students going onto Olympic success, with 11 individuals being part of Team GB in London 2012.
In addition to this, University of Reading students have access to the Campus Central shop, where you can purchase groceries, lunch and stationary. There is also a bookshop situated on campus, along with a Korean food store, hairdressers, mailbox and printing services. The variety of areas for students is forever growing.
Food and Nutritional Sciences
The University of Reading has up to 11 different food and drink related degrees for students to choose between. The University has two main degrees in this category, first being BSc Food Science, the second being BSc Nutrition and Food Science. Both of these courses are available to study individually, or students have the option to add a Year in Industry or Professional Training to their final degree. The courses range between 3-4 years; depending on what level they choose to uptake.
Both the BSc Food Science and Nutrition and Food courses include the same units in first year. This includes up to 8 core modules, along with multiple elements for students to choose from. This gives students the freedom of designing their own degree to best suit them. The main aim for tutors is to help students get to grips with the food industry and the process the food takes through production. The Professors at the University of Reading are actively engaged in advanced research within the sector, giving students the edge on being up-to-date with emerging studies.
The option to undertake either a 3 or 4-year course whilst at the University allows students to fully get the most out of their degree. By doing their course for an extra year, students are giving the opportunity to go out into the workplace and fully experience what the food industry has to offer. Choosing this route gives many students the upper hand when finishing their studies as it shows future employers that students at the University of Reading have great motivation towards succeeding in their goals. This undoubtedly helps towards the outstanding statistic of 95% of food and nutrition students being in further work or study in the 6 months after graduating.
The great opportunities being offered at the University of Reading will provide students with the best possible stance in maintaining a job in the food industry. The education prospects, along with the social lifestyle in Reading will contribute towards a happy and successful life for all students at the University