The 2017 recipients of the Agricultural Science Association (ASA) and the Irish Farmers Journal PWE or professional work experience abroad bursaries have begun to return from their international placements.
The bursaries were designed to encourage students to broaden their knowledge and skills while travelling internationally to gain experience in the global agri-food sector.
Here are some of our winner’s stories:
UCD student, Mairead Fox from Moat in Westmeath has recently returned from the trip of a lifetime to Missouri in the USA where she worked for just over four months with Emerald Dairies in Carthage. Recently returned home on May 30th, life in Missouri was an entirely new and challenging experience for Mairead. “When I think back to the very first day my first thought was `how am I going to survive the cold here?` or `how will I get used to the early starts?` as temperatures reached as low as minus ten degrees some days and cups were on at 5am each morning. However, when I was working on the farm, getting stuck into the daily routine of milking, feeding calves and general farm duties, I knew I was doing something I loved”.
WIT student, Ailish Osbourne from Castledermot in Kildare returned from New Zealand where she worked on a dairy farm with 820 cows for four months. Setting foot back on Irish soil on June 4th Ailish had nothing but positive things to say about her experience. Ailish went on to say that she was “really very privileged to have the opportunity to travel… I must admit that New Zealand truly did seize my heart — it’s rugged, untamed spirit, it’s warm and affectionate people and its truly astronomical agricultural industry all endeared me to this veritable paradise. It simply is an incredible place and definitely a country in the world that every young person should try visit.”