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Samantha Royston

Samantha Royston

To graduate in 2019

MSc in Sustainable Crop Development: Agronomy for the 21st Century

Nationality: British

First degree: Biological Sciences

First job after graduating: Food Crime Unit at the Food Standards Agency

I wanted to find a Master's course with a practical element, to learn more about the realities of farming. I chose Warwick because of the focus on the getting out into the field to learn about farming, and also because of its reputation and the Warwick Crop Centre.

The university is very modern compared to Oxford. I loved the app which tells you when and where your lectures are and provides lots of information about what is going on around the university. The campus is also very green, and nice to walk around.

Going out into the field every few weeks shadowing an agronomist has been really interesting and fun. I have learnt a lot more about the practical side of farming, and gained a much better understanding of arable cropping.

The best thing about the course has been getting the opportunity to do my thesis at Defra, which I have really enjoyed and learnt a lot from. I worked in the Plant Health team. This was a fantastic experience and gave me an opportunity to develop and demonstrate the research and analytical skillset I required for the job I will be starting soon. It gave me a better understanding of the workings of the civil service and was invaluable in getting a job in the civil service in the Food Crime Unit at the Food Standards Agency.

Whilst at Warwick I did ballroom dancing and beginners Spanish classes. I also participated in one of the one-off volunteering sessions which was really good.

Make the most of the placement opportunities and contacts of the lecturers!