Avo­cado study boost

Te Puke Times - - NEWS -

A new avo­cado schol­ar­ship has come on stream for ter­tiary stu­dents in 2019.

As part of ef­forts to ad­vance New Zealand’s avo­cado in­dus­try, AVOCO is of­fer­ing fi­nal-year Bach­e­lor de­gree stu­dents in key sub­jects a $5000 schol­ar­ship to­wards their study costs.

The suc­cess­ful re­cip­i­ent will also have the op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore sum­mer hol­i­day work in a re­lated field of study and re­ceive men­tor­ing from the AVOCO com­mu­nity.

AVOCO’s mar­ket­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions man­ager, Steve Trick­ett, says a ma­jor driver for of­fer­ing the schol­ar­ship was a de­sire to ex­tend the in­dus­try’s re­search and de­vel­op­ment ca­pa­bil­i­ties and re­cruit more tal­ented grad­u­ates.

“The abil­ity to re­li­ably and con­sis­tently de­liver pre­mium qual­ity fruit to con­sumers is crit­i­cal to AVOCO’s con­tin­ued suc­cess in the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket place.

“With av­o­ca­dos be­ing a prod­uct of na­ture, there are al­ways chal­lenges in meet­ing this ob­jec­tive from one sea­son to the next.

“Re­search and de­vel­op­ment is a key fo­cus area for AVOCO and so we are keen to see more grad­u­ates work­ing in this space.”

Ar­eas AVOCO would like the in­dus­try to fur­ther ex­plore in­clude is­sues re­lated to al­ter­na­tive or ir­reg­u­lar crop bear­ing, crop es­ti­ma­tion tech­niques, post-har­vest qual­ity is­sues, pest and dis­ease con­trol (with a fo­cus on en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly op­tions) and ship­ping tech­nolo­gies that pre­serve the pre­mium qual­ity of ex­port fruit.

AVOCO’s tech­ni­cal team, led by Colin Par­tridge, are in­ves­ti­gat­ing these is­sues along with in­dus­try body NZ Avo­cado. How­ever, fur­ther re­search was al­ways wel­comed, says Steve.

“Many of the chal­lenges we face as an in­dus­try won’t be solved overnight – they are is­sues that are likely to re­quire a com­mit­ment to lengthy tri­als and sci­en­tific ex­plo­ration in a New Zealand set­ting.

“With in­ter­est in our in­dus­try grow­ing along with ex­port mar­ket de­vel­op­ment in Asia un­der the AVANZA brand, we’re con­fi­dent we’ll find a ter­tiary stu­dent will­ing to com­bine their pas­sion for sci­ence and re­search with a de­sire to help us find in­no­va­tive, long-term so­lu­tions to chal­lenges we’re keen to over­come.”

To be el­i­gi­ble for the schol­ar­ship, stu­dents must be en­ter­ing their fi­nal year of study for a Bach­e­lor de­gree (or sim­i­lar) at any NZ uni­ver­sity in 2019. They must be a New Zealand cit­i­zen or per­ma­nent res­i­dent whose stud­ies re­late to any of the fol­low­ing: fruit pro­duc­tion, en­to­mol­ogy or plant pro­tec­tion, biose­cu­rity, bio­chem­istry or bi­o­log­i­cal sci­ence, post-har­vest tech­nol­ogy and treat­ment, or new tech­nolo­gies rel­e­vant to hor­ti­cul­ture.

One of the men­tors guid­ing the suc­cess­ful re­cip­i­ent will be tech­ni­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive Danni van der Hei­j­den. Ap­pointed to AVOCO’s tech­ni­cal team ear­lier this year, her role con­nects her with grow­ers while also giv­ing her free­dom to in­ves­ti­gate posthar­vest rot con­trol, among other is­sues.

She says the schol­ar­ship will pro­vide the re­cip­i­ent with valu­able fi­nan­cial sup­port and an op­por­tu­nity to con­tribute to the in­dus­try’s on­go­ing suc­cess.

“Hor­ti­cul­ture is an ex­cit­ing in­dus­try to be work­ing in right now and this schol­ar­ship could po­ten­tially kick-start some­one’s ca­reer work­ing with av­o­ca­dos.” Want to ap­ply?

■ Stu­dents must send their re­sume, a sum­mary of ter­tiary stud­ies and re­sults to date, along with a let­ter of ap­pli­ca­tion by email to Danni van der Hei­j­den at danni@avoco.co.nz by Fri­day Oc­to­ber 19.

■ Ap­pli­ca­tions should cover how an in­di­vid­ual’s stud­ies will ben­e­fit AVOCO and the avo­cado in­dus­try, ex­am­ples of lead­er­ship skills, any com­mu­nity ser­vice roles, and/or sport­ing and cul­tural ac­tiv­i­ties and achieve­ments, along with a vi­sion for what the ap­pli­cant wants to achieve in their ca­reer.

AVOCO tech­ni­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive Danni van der Hei­j­den.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.