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Veterinary student’s desire for rural practice rewarded

Veterinary student’s desire for rural practice rewarded

A veterinary science student’s ambition for rural practice was rewarded with a $2,500 scholarship from Agcarm.

Hannah MacPherson is in her third year of the veterinary science degree at Massey University and plans to use her recently-won funds to visit veterinary clinics around the country and experience the diversity of New Zealand’s rural practices.

After her studies, Hannah’s ambition is to work on farms as a rural practitioner. She has already worked on a dairy farm, sheep and beef farm, and in horse stables. Her experience ranges from milking and helping lame cows, conducting pastoral analysis to fencing, mowing lawns and cleaning out troughs.

Hannah spent the first 10 years of her life in Te Awamutu, before moving to Lower Hutt. The daughter of a vet, Hannah has always had an interest in horticulture and considered studying agricultural science, but veterinary medicine is her passion. She acknowledges the role of the veterinary pharmaceutical industry in her drive to be a successful large animal practitioner.

Hannah, 20, says that “the veterinary pharmaceutical industry not only plays a role in enhancing animal health but also reduces the incidence of some zoonotic diseases found globally.“ Zoonotic diseases are those transmitted between humans and animals, such as swine flu.

“Most of the intensive animal production systems, for example, pigs, poultry, fish, sheep, beef, cattle or dairy cattle, require a range of veterinary products to achieve optimum animal production and welfare.

“As the pharmaceutical industry delivers new active compounds to manage disease in animal populations, the veterinary profession and its key component, veterinary science, will continue to benefit”, said Hannah.

Driven to strive for excellence, Hannah has made the pro vice-chancellor’s merit list in 2012 and 2013, meaning she has maintained at least an A- average during her time at Massey.

The Agcarm scholarship is not the first for Hannah. She received the Massey University vice chancellor’s high achievers scholarship in 2011 and a painting scholarship for her year 13 portfolio on society’s perception of science.

Outside of her studies, Hannah can be found on the netball courts of the vet school, having also coached and captained netball teams at school. She scuba and free-dives and has a special interest in spearfishing. Painting is yet another interest she’s held from an early age.

Agcarm chief executive Graeme Peters said the association is pleased to contribute toward the future of such a dedicated, hard-working, all-round high achiever who is so committed to animal welfare.

“Hannah’s application was of a very high calibre. We were extremely impressed with the passion she showed for animal health, and believe she will do well in her veterinary career,” Mr Peters said.

Agcarm has two scholarships to support education and raise awareness about careers in Agcarm-related industries. The winner of the horticultural scholarship is Yvette Jones. The media release is available at:

Industry initiatives led by Agcarm include providing safe and sustainable animal health and crop protection technology for the future ofNew Zealand, and educating the community about the industry’s contribution.


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