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Opportunity open for leaders in rice

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The Ricegrowers’ Association of Australia is taking applications for the 2022 Greg Graham Memorial Scholarship and Peter Connor Book Award.

Since the awards were introduced in 2001, more than 40 agriculture students have participated in programs promoted through SunRice, Rice Research Australia and the RGA.

The Greg Graham Memorial Scholarship provides $10,000 to assist a student with the costs of tertiary education, and is named after past RGA president Greg Graham of Deniliquin, who died suddenly on New Year’s Day in 1983.

The Peter Connor Book Award is awarded to the runner-up of the Greg Graham Memorial Scholarship winner and consists of $3000 to put towards the cost of books and course materials.

Mr Connor was a leading rice grower in the Coleambally area, and was a long standing vice president of the RGA and board member of the Ricegrowers’ Co-operative Limited.

RGA president Rob Massina said the RGA is committed to the industry’s long term future and sees the next generation as a key part of its success.

‘‘Most of the successful applicants of these two scholarships have returned to our communities and farms with leading edge knowledge which has strengthened and rejuvenated our agricultural industry,’’ he said.

Recipient of the 2021 Greg Graham Memorial Scholarship Tom Mannes, from Coleambally, is in his final year of a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Science at Charles Sturt University.

He said the Greg Graham scholarship has not only provided him with significant financial assistance, but also the confidence to ‘‘follow my passion for agriculture’’.

‘‘The scholarship interview process also introduced me to inspiring leaders within the industry. I look forward to continuing to develop my agricultural career after graduating.’’

James McCaw from Berriquin received the 2021 Peter Connor Book Award which alleviated some of the financial pressures associated with university.

To be eligible, students must meet the following criteria:

Applicants must be the child or grandchild of:

  • A current financial member of RGA and/or;
  • An A-Class share holder and/or;
  • A grower who has grown rice in the last 3 years including C22.

Applicants must be in their second or successive year of studying an agricultural focused and/or industry-related course at an Australian tertiary institution, and demonstrate a commitment to the rice industry.

Previous recipients of the Peter Connor Book Award are eligible for GGMS, but recipients of the Jan Cathcart Scholarship are ineligible.

Recipients who have previously been awarded a GGMS are ineligible for the Peter Connor Book Award.

To apply visit:

www.rga.org.au/the_rice_industry/scholarships.

Applications close February 11 at noon. Interviews will be conducted the week beginning February 14, and the successful applicants announced 9am on February 25.