Is your dream career veterinary science

If you are a rural student and your dream is to become a vet check out this great new scholarship


For a rural student who is interested in becoming a veterinarian

Value $24,000

The Faculty of Veterinary Science is pleased to announce The Swan Family Scholarship.

Starting in 2015, this Scholarship is for an outstanding student from a rural area to study our new Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program with the Faculty of Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney.

The Swan Family Scholarship will provide the successful candidate with $6,000 per year for each year of the DVM program, so $24,000 in total.

The student awarded The Swan Family Scholarship will be someone who is able to articulately voice rural concerns and contribute to constructive, contextual debate.

The criteria for selection are:

  • an Australian citizen or permanent resident;
  • a high-achieving, rural applicant who is eligible for enrolment in the DVM in the year of the award;
  • evidence of direct experience in the rural sector;
  • demonstration of an active interest in rural affairs and a desire to contribute to issues affecting the future of rural Australia; and
  • demonstration of how a Scholarship would assist in achieving their education and career goals.

Then, for continuation of the Scholarship:

  • demonstrating annually, exemplary academic progress.

The student must already have completed an undergraduate degree, and full details for admission to the new DVM program are on our website. The Faculty will be selecting from a group of students identified on the basis of exceptional academic achievement, proven leadership ability and personal character. We will be looking for their commitment to their community, and their willingness to help and inspire others.

If you are interested in applying for The Swan Family Scholarship, or if you would like more information, please contact:

Pro Dean, Associate Professor Paul Sheehy

(02) 9351 5983 (Sydney)

(02) 9351 1657 (Camden)

0434 181 718

Or look on The University of Sydney website under the Faculty of Veterinary Science

And more great news

Dr Bill Porges, tells us the University of Sydney has increased the funds available for the St Andrews College (SAC) Scholarships/Bursary to provide accommodation at the prestigious St Andrews College on the grounds of Sydney University with the intention to attract (and enable) exceptional women and men into SAC who  “… may otherwise not have the opportunity to experience life in SAC”.

Guess what St Andrews College just happens to be right nest door to the vet school at Sydney University

Dairy professional Sarah Saxton named Victorian Art4Ag ambassador

Art4Agriculture is thrilled to announce Victorian Dairy industry professional and food and fibre advocate Sarah Saxton has been named state ambassador of the national Art4Agriculture Young Farming Champions (YFC) program.

Sarah Saxton

Sarah Saxton Victorian Art4Agriculture Young Farming Champions Ambassador

An all-round passion for Australian agriculture – from her family farming background, education endeavours, and her current role with the Australian Dairy Herd Improvement Scheme (ADHIS) -make Sarah a perfect fit as Victorian ambassador, which will see her actively support and promote the Art4Agriculture YFC program throughout the year.

Art4Ag National Program Director Lynne Strong says, “Sarah epitomises what the YFC program is all about: showcasing exciting young people in diverse careers in agriculture, who are leading by example and forging a connected, cohesive and vibrant agricultural sector that the next generation see as the place they want to be.”

Now in its fourth successful year, the program provides training and development for young people involved in agriculture, positioning them as food and fibre industry advocates to actively engage with students in city based schools, using Art4Agriculture programs as a platform.

Sarah has strong ties with Victoria’s farming community, including her current role as Extension Officer with the ADHIS, which sees her deliver the latest science and technology in genetic improvement to Australian dairy farmers.

Married to a winemaker on the Mornington Peninsula and recently appointed a board member of the Mornington Peninsula Food Industry Advisory Body, Sarah loves sharing her unique insight into the “whole range of people, in country and city, who are involved in getting food on the table.”

Sarah believes in good food, good farming and strengthening the relationship between these two vital industries. 

For more information on the Art4Agriculture programs visit:

RAS FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIPS for 2015 academic year

A number of our Young Farming Champion have benefited from these wonderful scholarships that are now open for application


Since 2011, the RAS Foundation has provided over 180 students with $921,500 worth of financial support to fulfill their educational goals. The helping hand given to these students assists them to achieve their potential, and provide regional and rural NSW with a more vibrant and sustainable future.

Rural Scholarship are now open for 2015 – we ask that you please pass on this information to suitable students in your networks who require financial support, love to give back to their community and want to make rural and regional NSW more resilient and dynamic!

Rural Scholarships are targeted at a tertiary level – TAFE, VET courses and University.

For more information visit:

Rural Scholarships (NSW only) Up to 45 scholarships – $5000

JB Fairfax Award for Rural Journalism (National) 1 only – $10,000

Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship (National) 1 only –  $5000

Sydney Royal Dairy Produce Scholarship (NSW only) – 1 only -$5000

Applications close 30 September 2014

For further information please contact

Nicole Day

Program Manager -  Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Foundation

working Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays

Royal Agricultural Society of NSW
1 Showground Road, Sydney Olympic Park, NSW 2127

t (02) 9704 1232 : f (02) 9704 1104 : e w:

Remembering what we’ve got before it becomes what we had

Last year Art4Agriculture through funding from Caring for our Country was able to train Young Eco Champions to go into schools with our Young Farming Champions as part of the Archibull Prize. The objective of the Young Eco Champions program at a grass roots level is to raise

  • awareness of, and a passion for landcare principles in young farmers
  • awareness and understanding amongst young landcarers of the challenges and constraints of modern sustainable agricultural systems

The program was a huge success both in building relationships between young people working in natural resource management and young farmers and leaving a lasting impact on the students they both visited in terms of raising awareness and showcasing the wonderful partnerships that have being built over the last 25 years between farmers and landcarers to nurture our natural environment.

Whilst the current federal government has chosen not to continue with Caring for our Country funding  I know our Young Eco Champions are committed to ensuring the program has a lasting legacy and what better example than this initiative conceived by Young Eco Champion Megan Rowlatt that saw Megan take a team of young city people to visit and work on the family farm of  2014 Wool Young Farming Champion Tom Tourle

The story ……..

Young environmentalists have been smashing agricultural stereotypes through a recent partnership between two New South Wales Landcare groups, 600 kilometres apart.

Six Illawarra Youth Landcare volunteers travelled to Dubbo last month, through connections with the Little River Landcare group, to work on the Tourle family’s sixth generation 4450 hectare sheep property ‘Oxley Downs’.

The volunteers, from areas around Wollongong, Sydney and the US, came from backgrounds including university students and workers in mining, conservation, and education sectors, and say they all took away something special from the experience.

IYL Volunteers sit on the verandah of an old log cabin on the property

Megan and her team on the veranda of one of the historic log cabins on the property

Illawarra Youth Landcare group coordinator Megan Rowlatt, who has been working and volunteering in Landcare for more than six years, says the volunteers had their own preconceived ideas of what the farm experience would be like, “but what we actually got to experience was so much more.”

“The Tourle family openly welcomed us onto their property, they shared their vision for the farm and the environment, their challenges, their trials and errors, and their home,” Megan says.

Jenna, a volunteer from Wollongong, says, “The Tourles created a beautiful, positive image of how people are changing their land management and farming techniques to be as positive and environmentally friendly as possible.”

Volunteers with Scott Tourle hearing about cell grazing

Scott Tourle sharing the finer points of cell grazing with the Illawarra Youth Landcare Group

Self-described city-slicker Dustin from California, USA, says, “It was a pleasure to learn how the Tourles have immense respect for the land they have been working for generations, and I was impressed by their knowledge of the finest details regarding the land.”

Chris, from Wollongong, says, “The entire weekend was far beyond what I could have expected, from the knowledge shared, the interest in our own experience, the hospitality and genuine wanting to have us to understand and share their vision for the future has given an extremely positive outlook for the future of agriculture.”

Sydney girl Nicole says, “We also learnt a lot about land management and how challenging it can be. I have developed a great respect for farmers and the hard work that is put in, day in and day out.”

Emily, from Wollongong, says, “I was relieved to discover there are farmers out there who understand the value of ecosystem management and protection and who are actively working towards the betterment of the environment.”

IYL volunteers fencing

Young city people learn how to fence

Megan says she organised the trip because people from cities and urban areas are becoming increasingly disconnected from the environment and rural Australia.

“Thankyou to Little River Landcare and Scott, Liz and Sam for opening their home and providing such a welcoming environment so we could break down the barriers, debunk the stereotypes, and have these conversations.”

Illawarra Youth Landcare is a network of young volunteers who carry out a variety of activities in the Illawarra, NSW and beyond. The group’s aim is to introduce young people to the diversity of environmental management issues faced in Australia.

Big boys toys

This year Art4Agriculture has a brand new partnership with the grains industry and they were very keen to get into the mix and be part of the 2014 school allocation. That has meant  a mad scramble to pull together the necessary resources for the schools allocated grains as part of their quest to win the Archibull Prize.

The grains industry is very lucky to have access to the talents of Belinda Cay who has pulled together some very interesting information on the Australian grains industry in a very short amount of time. Want to know some facts about Australian grains Check this out

Quirky facts about all our industries in the Archibull Prize spotlight

Food and Fibre Infographic

Now what is fascinating me about the grains industry is the interest on YouTube in watching grains either sown or harvested

Love this one with 16,000 hits

Then there is this one with over 150,000 hits

But that’s nothing check these out

Grains video hits

My goodness Aussie Big Boys Toys are almost ( well not quite) as popular as the Peterson Bros

BTW might just be getting up close and personal with the Peterson Bros next month myself

Rural advocate Alex Milner-Smyth named as Art4Ag ambassador for South Australia

Young agribusiness professional and rural advocate, South Australia’s Alex Milner-Smyth has been named as ambassador of the national Art4Agriculture Young Farming Champions (YFC) program.

Alex Milner Smyth

Now in its fourth successful year, the Art4Agticulture YFC program aims to create a nation-wide network of young farming professionals and build their capacity to promote Australian agriculture as a dynamic, innovative, and rewarding industry.

The program provides training and development for young people involved in agriculture, positioning them as food and fibre industry advocates to actively engage with students in city based schools, using Art4Agriculture programs like the Archibull Prize as a platform.

As official ambassador, 32-year-old Alex will play a role in promoting and supporting the Art4Agriculture YFC program throughout the year.

Based in SA’s Riverland region Alex is managing director and CEO of Rustic Evolutions, a professional media, marketing and event management company aimed specifically to the agricultural sector. Alex’s entrepreneurial drive has secured clients such as the Australian Controlled Traffic Farming Association, online rural merchandisers The Farm Co, and SA horticultural group Hortex.

Alex has spent more than 10 years working in agriculture and agribusiness, with employers including Elders, Landmark and most recently as the executive officer for the South Australian No-Till Farmer’s Association.

In 2012 Alex was awarded the Agricultural Bureau of South Australia’s Rural Youth Bursary to undertake a study tour of the USA, investigating the potential of cover cropping.

Alex says she’d loved to see more young people applying for programs such as the Art4Ag YFC and Rural Youth Bursary which can “really open doors for people at the beginning of their careers.”

“Opportunities like those provided by Art4Ag better connect young people with the industry they work in,” she says. “This leads to personal career development and also fosters a more inclusive industry and culture.

“The next generation is going to play an important role in the future of agriculture and I hope to increase awareness of the support that’s available for them.”

Alex will be presenting on her US study tour findings and officially announce her ambassadorship at the Yorke and Mid North ABARES Regional Outlook conference, this Thursday 12 June, at Coopers Alehouse, Wallaroo. Alex presentation is titled ‘Valuing cover crops or “don’t farm naked”! 

For more information on the Art4Agriculture programs visit:

For Interviews


Lynne Strong E:

Alex Milner-Smyth, Managing Director and CEO, Rustic Evolutions


Are you an aspiring industry leader

Last year Young Farming Champion Bronwyn Roberts had the exciting opportunity to be the guest speaker at the Marcus Oldham College Leadership Program Gala Dinner.

She wrote this truly inspiring post to share her experience 

Bronwyn Roberts

Bronwyn Roberts had a big year in 2013. Not only was she the guest speaker at the Marcus Oldham Leadership Dinner she won the prestigious 2013 Red Meat Industry Emerging Leader Award 

Bron was overwhelmed by the combined talent of the young people she met who were participating in the 2013 Leadership program and she has asked me to promote the 2014 MARCUS OLDHAM RURAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAM far and wide.

This program is a once a year opportunity to participate on an intense five-day workshop conducted on the College campus at Geelong, commencing on the last Sunday in June each year.

To seek to develop the skills and knowledge of participants to enable them:

  • To undertake a leadership role in their industry or community
  • To competently represent their industry or community in decision making forums
  • To understand and address the issues facing rural industries and rural communities


  • To develop the leadership, communication and planning skills of individuals in the Program, through their participation in a process of self-discovery, skills training, knowledge building and team development
  • To provide opportunities for participants to network with keynote speakers from industry and the community

You can visit here to read more about the program

and download the nomination brochure here

Bron is now on the board of the Australian Beef Industry Foundation and they are offering  together with the Future Farmers Network (FFN)  two opportunities for commercial cattle producers, aged between 25 and 40 to attend the one-week Rural Leadership Program at the Marcus Oldham College in Geelong, Victoria in June this year.

For more details visit the website here or check out the ABIF Facebook page here