Smedley Station announces graduates for 2010

Smedley Station announces graduates for 2010

On 15 December Smedley Station will celebrate the graduation of 10 new cadets who have successfully completed two years at the Smedley Cadet Training Farm and passed their Level 4 National Certificate in Agriculture. The 2010 graduates will join approximately 600 cadets who have graduated since 1931 to pursue rewarding careers in the agricultural sector.

"This year's graduates come from a broad range of backgrounds and experiences, with five originally from urban centres. While at Smedley Station they have completed the challenging practical and theoretical training to the highest of standards and we are very proud of their achievements," said John Derry, Public Trust's Farm Centre Manager.

The 2010 graduating cadets are: Trent Butler, Carterton; Callum Cox, Napier; Guy Fraser, Taumarunui; Samuel Gammie, Upper Hutt; Andrew Lee, Waipukurau; Thomas Lilley, Pahiatua; Kurt McCormick, Waipukurau; James McLachlan, Masterton; Mitchell Nation, Napier and Samuel Parsons, Napier.

Three of the 10 cadets will continue their studies at the University of Lincoln with James McLachlan studying a Diploma in Farm Management and Andrew Lee and Samuel Gammie studying a Bachelor of Commerce in Agriculture. The remaining seven cadets will go on to jobs that they have secured on farms throughout New Zealand.

"From the start of October right through to December I receive at least one call a week from farmers across the country trying to source Smedley Station cadets to work on their farms. This speaks volumes of the calibre of young farmer's that graduate from our training programme and how highly their skills are regarded within the industry," said Terry Walters, Smedley Station's Farm Manager.

The graduation ceremony will also acknowledge individual cadets dedication to the course and commendable personal attributes, with prizes awarded for strong leadership skills and high academic achievement through to sound general farm skills.

Located 40kms west of Waipukurau, near the Wakarara and Ruahine ranges, Smedley Station offers a unique training experience for young cadets looking to further their agricultural education as they work towards establishing a career in the farming industry. Operating as both a commercial farm and a self-funded training facility the practical and theory based training is structured around the farming year so that training is relevant to what cadets are doing on the farm at the time.

Bequeathed to the Crown by Josiah Howard in 1919, today Smedley Station is directed under the Howard Estate Act which provides for the land to be held by Public Trust as a permanent endowment for the purpose of agricultural education.  Each year the Advisory Board, established under the Act to advise Public Trust on the management of the farm and to oversee cadet selection and training, receive numerous applications from 15-20 year olds to attend the training course. The applicants then complete a thorough application process and are interviewed by the Board members where they look for academic achievements, proven commitment to agriculture, maturity and strong team skills.

"The attributes the Board look for in cadets are crucial to ensuring their success at Smedley Station. They need to be able to live and work closely together and be able to undertake both the physical and academic training of the course," said Mr Walters.

"This year we received 74 applications which we had to select the 11 new cadets from. We look forward to welcoming them to the farm in early January and help them settle in to their two years here at Smedley Station."

Notes to editors:
Smedley Station: In 1919 Smedley Station owner, Josiah Howard, bequeathed Smedley Station to His Majesty the King, with the confidence that the New Zealand Government would use the property as a foundation or endowment for the purpose of agricultural education. Smedley Station is the largest active farm administered by Public Trust's National farm Centre and comprises approximately 5,000 hectares (3,187 ha effective) of flat to steep hill country. The first training cadets arrived at medley farm in 1931 and more than 600 cadets have graduated over the last 80 years.

Contact: Leah Phelps, External Communications Manager

Phone: DDI: 04-978 4636 Cell: 029 978 4528