Home > City kid in country school wins Dow AgroSciences-PICSE scholarship

City kid in country school wins Dow AgroSciences-PICSE scholarship

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article image Will Howard is selected for the 2013 Dow AgroSciences Industry Scholarship Program
A city-based student who moved to a country school has been selected for the 2013 Industry Placement Scholarship at the Breeza Research Station of Dow AgroSciences Australia near Tamworth, NSW.
With a love for agriculture, 17-year-old Will Howard has defied the trend to leave the bush and head for the city, instead choosing to move from Sydney to enrol as a boarding student at The Armidale School in the New England region of New South Wales.
Will’s passion for agriculture recently received a boost following his selection from a pool of 65 students across New South Wales and Queensland for the Industry Scholarship Program, which is a joint venture between Dow AgroSciences and The Primary Industry Centre for Science Education (PICSE), with students selected through a rigorous application and interview process.
Will was selected for the Industry Scholarship Program due to his commitment to a career in agriculture and his strong academic success. The five-day placement in January next year will see Will working alongside research scientists, enabling him to expand his understanding of the varied roles for university graduates keen to explore a career in the agricultural industry.
Explaining his affinity with the region, Will said that he was actually born in Armidale and moved to Sydney at the age of six. He joined The Armidale School for his Higher School Certificate as he wanted to experience boarding school and was keen to meet new people from different backgrounds. The Year 11 student has a 15-year-old brother, Ed, who has also been enrolled at the school for a year now.
Will’s interest in agriculture stems from his family background and a passion for science. The family owns three cattle properties near Coonabarabran and in the upper Hunter Valley in New South Wales, where he spends a week every school holidays, working alongside the other employees.
Though he might work on the land or in commodities trading like his father, Will believes the placement at Breeza will give him the opportunity to see a very different side of the industry. He is specifically interested in learning about the research that goes into crop protection.
According to Susanna Grieg, Science Education Officer for PICSE, who is based at the University of New England, Will’s passion for agriculture and his commitment to a life in the country, despite his upbringing in the city in addition to his good academic performance at school made him the ideal candidate for the scholarship.
Dow AgroSciences’ Research and Development Leader, Australia and New Zealand, Dr Matt Cahill, adds that Will is precisely the type of young person the sector needs to overcome its ongoing skills shortage. He explains that previous recipients of the Industry Scholarship have benefitted significantly from their experience at Breeza, with many changing their career paths as a result of the placement.
On completion of the scholarship, Will will prepare a written report and make a verbal presentation outlining his experience, and also receive a $300 scholarship cheque.

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