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Martin Sage (BSc Agriculture 1966)


I was brought up on a Cotswold farm and was expected to return there at 16. I decided to take A levels and then to go to Reading and enjoyed the time there. I did a Masters in US and then 4 years working for PIC before returning to farm with my family and also in Brazil. I was active in NFU and other industry organisations before retiring from farming in 2000. Since then I have run some holiday lets in Somerset and done wildlife survey work.

Why did you choose to study at the University of Reading?

I was coming from a farming background. None of my family had gone beyond secondary school so it was a steep learning curve.

What was the best bit about living and studying in Reading?

Having the campus in open park land away from a busy city. Being from a farm in the Cotswolds, I have never felt comfortable in busy streets. I was also a keen member of the Athletics Club and spent many Saturdays competing against other Universities.

What top tips would you give to students who are beginning their studies?

Work regular hours! If you work in the morning you can have a pint in the evening without worrying about unfinished work. I also rewrote all of my notes after lectures and found that a valuable way of storing information for exams.

What are you up to now? How did you get there?

Retired after a farming career in Gloucestershire and Brazil. I am now active in wildlife conservation in Somerset.

What would be your top tips for students interested in working in this sector?

Look at the whole world of farming before deciding where to work. The UK is a small country and agriculture takes place in every corner of the planet.

How has the University of Reading and the Careers Centre helped in your chosen career path?

I was head hunted from the University by my first employer. I then spent 2 years doing a Masters at Cornell before taking up the job.

What does the University mean to you and what is your favourite memory?

I met my future wife there and made many friends.

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