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GIIDAE: North America Scholarship

Kaylie Raber, MSc Food Security and Development (2021)


What did you do before coming to Reading?

Before studying at the University of Reading (Reading), I was a licensed attorney working in data security and privacy law in the United States.

What are your career aspirations?

I am eager to work towards alleviating food security issues for poor and underprivileged individuals living in urban centres and food deserts. I also hope to work on policy that aids malnutrition and obesity in children.

What interested you in your chosen area of study?

Initially, I studied the legal implications of childhood obesity in law school, and through personal research, realised how global this issue was. Our international food markets have altered the way that everyone eats, which has prevented hunger, but also increased other food related issues. I am excited to study and solve some of those issues.

Why did you choose Reading?

Reading has an excellent reputation for food, agriculture, and policy so it was an easy choice for me. Since joining, I have been reassured that Reading is the ideal place to study. The support from professors and tutors in unprecedented and the camaraderie amongst piers is fantastic.

How do you think this qualification will help you in the future?

This course has concentrated the study of food security and development perfectly, while enabling students to take elective modules to follow their interests. I have learned so much more than I even knew existed in this area, which I will absolutely take forth into my future career.

What have you enjoyed most about your time at Reading?

Reading is such a supportive community. It has been easy to make friends, and the university is ideally located with easy access to nearby farms as well as London.

Would you recommend the programme to other students, if so, why?

I would absolutely recommend this programme to prospective students. The support and upper tier of education is unmatched. It can be difficult as an international student to adjust to life in a new country but being at Reading and a part of the Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics (GIIDAE) has made that transition easy. Furthermore, studying at Reading has really allowed me to foster my own goals while also challenging me to go beyond my own worldview.

How has the Scholarship helped you?

The scholarship gave me the opportunity to pursue this degree without the burden of taking out extraneous amounts of student loans. While many scholarships are strictly merit based, GIIDAE looks at each student as a whole when awarding the scholarships so I would encourage anyone to apply!

Is there anything that you would like to add?

This programme has been truly life-changing for me! I am grateful to be surrounded by so many fantastic mentors and peers, and I look forward to what the future holds after life at Reading!