On the 7th of November 2019 a farm walk was held on the farm of Liam Roche Mitchelstown Co Cork for fifth year Agricultural Science students from schools from the surrounding catchment area. This event was organised for the NEFERTITI project Network 10 campaign. Teagasc in association with IASTA (Irish Agricultural Science Teachers’ Association) hosted this ‘You Can Farm’ event with over 150 students attending from local secondary schools. The purpose of this interactive event was to give an overview of dairy farming, promote dairy farming as a career, showing access routes to becoming a dairy farmer and increase student knowledge of dairy farming, assisting with their studies.
The event stations/demonstrations included:
- Liam’s entry into dairy farm and farm expansion since
- Grassland management and grazing infrastructure
- Animal breeding; breeding strategies and animal physiology
- The milking procedure, milking equipment and milk quality
- Agricultural education and careers in dairy farming
- Body condition scoring and locomotion
- Animal nutrition and diet formulations
Opening the event John Horgan Teagasc regional manager for Cork East encouraged students to use the opportunity to learn about dairy farming, careers in agriculture and to engage with speakers.
Liam Roche host farmer outlined his career in dairying from starting on a rented farm with 12 cows and growing slowly to 40 cows. Later partnership was formed with his parents with two herds amalgamated on a greenfield site and the herd has grown steadily since.
John Moriarty NEFETRITI project advisor with Teagasc stated “there is high demand for skilled people in the dairy industry and this provides a great opportunity for young people. Increasing awareness of these opportunities is critical in attracting the best people into the industry. The careers of Liam, Sean and Dylan are prime examples of the potential in dairy careers”.
George Dennis chairman of IASTA said “This event is a great opportunity for students due to be sitting the leaving certificate in 2021 to visit a progressive dairy farm. It is also beneficial for the students to gain practical experience to help them with completing their Agricultural Science practical project and allows students to find out about job opportunities such as relief milking and careers available in the Agri Industry”.
Sharon O Mahoney, Michael Hassett and Padraig McCormack Teagasc with assistant farm manager Dylan discussing careers and education.
Further information on the NEFERTITI project is available from the Irish Hub contact: John Moriarty | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org |