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Vote of Confidence in Poultry Course at SRUC Ayr from Award Winning Distance Learner

Published Wednesday, 17th December 2014 in Study at SRUC news


An award winning poultry student has given a vote of confidence on what the Ayr Riverside campus of Scotland’s Rural College has to offer.

Receiving a major poultry industry award in the House of Commons recently he expressed his wish to continue working with SRUC and even study for a Masters degree.

Sam Jones, who started at 14 as an egg collector on a Cheshire poultry farm, now manages six farms rearing turkeys used in a breeding programme for industry giant Aviagen. He decided to enrol for an HNC in Poultry Production through SRUC in Ayr because it allowed him to study while continuing to work. He committed himself to doing much of his studying on line, supported by SRUC tutors and complimented with study weekends in Ayr where he and his course mates could get together.

It was that commitment to learning and willingness to develop that earned him the Zoetis/British Poultry Council Trainee Trophy. At an award ceremony on the Houses of Parliament he also collected a £2,000 training grant and £500 from Poultry World Magazine from Anne McIntosh MP, Chair of the House of Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee.

In congratulating all the industry prize winners she told the audience of industry leaders, peers and other MP’s that “having a number of major poultry producers in my constituency I recognise and welcome their contribution to the local economy and bringing food to our table.”

Sam Jones indicated his intention to continue studying at SRUC, possibly moving on to complete a Masters.

According to Lorraine Davitt, SRUC’s Poultry Programme Leader at Ayr, Sam is a student who stands out in a crowd.

“I look forward to reading his work, it makes me smile. It is all so well thought out and full of enthusiasm for the industry that fills me with optimism.”

The HNC in Poultry Production at SRUC is the only course of its kind in Europe and the result of close consultation with a high tech industry where employees want to update their skills without spending weeks away from home and family. The course is also proving popular with those seeking a change of career, but cannot afford to “go back to college” and miss a salary.

The course takes 2 years and students study 12 modules depending on the subjects they want to learn. These can include Poultry Meat Production Systems; Poultry Behaviour and Welfare; Poultry Health and Business Management. Individual modules can also be studied as part of Professional Development or CPD.

To apply or find out more visit our Poulty homepage, or contact Lindsay Cunningham, Marketing and Student Recruitment Officer, on 01292 886196 or email

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