The day before the Nuffield Farming Annual Conference, normally held in the third week of November, a special briefing day is organised for all New Scholars. This provides them with details about the Trust and all aspects of their Scholarship. They also have the opportunity to meet each other for the first time. Partners are very welcome and encouraged to attend the New Scholars Briefing and all or part of the Annual Conference.
New Scholars will have a good idea of their plans to conduct their study and, indeed, will have submitted this in their application. Over the winter they will need to develop this further into a comprehensive plan of the dates of travel, outline itinerary and estimates of costs. This will then be submitted to the Nuffield Farming Office for approval and enables the release of bursary funds when needed.
All New Scholars attend a two to three day Pre-Study Briefing, called a ‘Pre-CSC’, held in London immediately before travelling to their International CSC. The Pre-Study Briefing has three aims: to provide an insight into strategic issues of agriculture from a UK perspective; to practice conference skills and techniques; and to enable the new scholars to bond as a year group.
The CSC is held in a different Nuffield Country each year - for example, in 2018 it was held in the Netherlands, and in 2019 it was America. All new international Scholars attend. Its purpose is to develop in all the New Scholars the leadership qualities, skills and understanding to make best use of their scholarship. The CSC is normally held in early March over a ten day period.
A GFP Tour offers a unique opportunity for UK Scholars to undertake extra sponsored travel as a member of a small group of International Scholars. Each GFP Tour will travel for approximately seven weeks on a programme of visits spanning some six different nations. Scholars benefit from exposure to a broad range of agricultural systems, in very different political and social environments, whilst travelling in a close group of individuals of varying backgrounds during an intense programme. Different programmes are available to choose from directly after the CSC and early Summer each year but not all UK Nuffield Scholars are able (or obliged) to take part.
Time spent on 'Study Travel' is at the core of the Nuffield Farming Scholarship. Scholars travel for a minimum of eight weeks to countries of their choice anywhere in the world. In order to gain most from their journeying, Scholars are required to travel independently for at least four weeks and are advised not to visit too many countries. Scholars are encouraged to complete their travels by March in Year 2.
Specialist coaching tailored to help Nuffield Scholars in the drafting of their reports is provided. This provides valuable assistance in the production of the Scholar’s written study report.
On completion of their Study Tour, Scholars will submit a full written report, which will then be edited and formally published by the Trust.
Towards the end of September, a training day is provided to help Scholars in the preparation of their presentation for Conference and coach them in useful techniques.
Scholars will present their findings, the conclusions they have reached and their recommendations to the industry at the Nuffield Farming Annual Conference.
Having successfully completed a Scholarship, the learning process continues for life. Scholars enjoy a programme of regular sector and regional study meetings, visits and farm walks held in the UK and abroad. This is in addition to one-off specialist industry conferences staged by the Nuffield Farming Scholarships Trust and an invaluable network of industry contacts.