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Taratahi Graduates Well Prepared for Agricultural Careers

Friday, 7 December 2012

For Immediate Release

Taratahi Graduates Well Prepared for Agricultural Careers

Hundreds of families, farmers, agri-business professionals and supporters along with academic and farming staff packed out the Masterton Town Hall yesterday to celebrate a year of hard work, challenges and achievement by one hundred and thirty-nine Taratahi students.

Taratahi Chief Executive Donovan Wearing honoured the achievements of both students and staff. “I am so proud to see so many motivated young people graduating today. Their success is our success. Preparing young people to enter the agricultural industry with the right skills and attitude is sometimes a challenge. These graduates prove that it can be done, and more than that – done well,” said Wearing. “Taratahi has a 90% course completion rate and 85% qualification rate and that puts us on top of all the universities and tertiary institutions in the country. Outcomes for Maori learners are some of the best in the country and that makes me extremely proud.”

Guests of honour Paul McElroy, Chief Executive, UCOL and Bruce McKenzie, Professor of Agronomy and Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Lincoln University awarded certificates, scholarships and prizes at the ceremony. Guest speaker Taine Randell, Director, Ngati Kahungunu Asset Holdings and former All Black Captain, advised students to keep striving towards future success in the agricultural industry.

“Farming is the backbone of New Zealand. We have the best farmers in the world. New Zealand is full of natural resources and none better than those sitting here today,” said Randell. He urged the students to participate fully in life and their chosen career. “Have no regrets in life. Personally I wouldn’t change a thing, maybe a few line-out calls! I had skin in the game and my neck on the line and I would do the same again. My advice is to do everything you can and do as much as you can.”

Full-time first and second year students achieving Level Three and Four nationally recognised agricultural qualifications, along with Primary Industry Trades Academy students were part of the ceremony today. Taratahi’s first cohort graduating with a National Certificate of Equine (Stable Procedures) was also presented with certificates and trophies.

Taine Randell awarded the thirty-five trophies representing achievement in a variety of disciplines from fencing and dog handling to agricultural management and endeavour. The Taratahi Cup for Best Overall Student went to Shawn Sands from Wauiku, near Pukekohe. He also took the National Bank Cup for Top Dairy Student Level 3, the Strainrite Taratahi Fencing Competition Cup and the Perry Cup for Ideal Trainee.

The Bank of New Zealand Cup for Top Sheep Student Level 3 went to Danielle Scott who also took the Wrightson Cup for Best Wire Work, the Landcorp Farming Ltd Top Level 4 Sheep Student was Cameron Dallas and the Semex NZ Ltd Top Level 4 Dairy Student was Jacob Abbot.


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