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SRUC Students Shine at LANTRA Awards

Published Wednesday, 6th March 2013 in Study at SRUC news

Findlay Ross - Agri Winner

Students from the Oatridge, Barony and Craibstone Campuses shared in an outstanding list of success at the prestigious Lantra, Scotland Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards.

Together Scotland’s Rural College won five categories, the overall award and also collected the CARAS prize, presented by the Council for the Awards of Royal Agricultural Societies. At the ceremony in Crieff Hydro Hotel five SRUC students were also recognised as runners up.

Attending the event on behalf of SRUC senior Management was a delighted David James, Assistant Principal/Further Education. He said:

“I would like to congratulate all the prize winners here this evening. It is great to be able to celebrate the achievements of these outstanding students who are very deserving of these important awards.  It is vital for the future of these industries that we continue to encourage new entrants and demonstrate how employers can see bottom line benefits that highly skilled new entrants can bring to the business.”

Later both SRUC Principal Professor Bob Webb and Professor David McKenzie, Vice Principal Education added their congratulations to all involved.

Overall winner of the Lantra, Landbased and Aquaculture Learner of the Year award was Oatridge student Finlay Ross from Perth, who also took the Agriculture Learner of the Year award home. Finlay (18) left school at the end of his fifth year to study for a certificate on Agriculture at SRUC’s Oatridge campus. He works part time on a local farm where he works with machinery and livestock.

“I was so happy to win the award for agricultural learner of the year, especially as I’m not from a farming background.  To also receive the overall winner was unbelievable. I developed a fascination for the machines I watched in the fields around my home, which soon turned into a passion for farming. The training has given me a good grounding, and I hopefully will stand me in good stead to become a farm manager, which is what I aspire to.”

Eamon MonaghanThe CARAS Award went to Eamon Monaghan (18), originally from Penrith, but who is now working as Assistant Herdsperson at Barony, where he studied for his National Certificate in Agriculture.  Eamon is another double award winner as the Higher Education Learner of the year.

Other winners were:

  • Environmental Conservation Learner of the Year - Scott Mason, Oatridge, SVQ Level 2 in Environmental Conservation.
  • Fisheries Management Learner of the Year - Adam Beynon-Jones,Barony, SVQ Level 2 Fisheries Management.
  • Landbased Service Engineer Learner of the Year - Malcolm Paton, Barony, National Cert. Landbased Engineering.  

Runners up included:

  • Equine Learner of the Year - Jo Robertson, Oatridge, National Cert. Equine Studies
  • Landbased Service Engineer Learner of the Year – Kevin Sutherland, Barony, National Cert Landbased Engineering.
  • CARAS Award – Malcolm Paton, Barony, National Cert Landbased Engineering.
    Higher Education Learner of the Year – Rachel MacKellar, Craibstone.      
  • Rural Skills School Award - Oatridge Campus,  in partnership with Cardinal Newman School.

Head Judge Peter Alexander, of CARAS, said:

“Lantra has been celebrating learners’ achievements in the land-based and environmental sector since 2003. These awards are vitally important in recognising the success of learners from across Scotland, and also act as a source of inspiration for those considering a career in this diverse and rewarding sector. I would like to congratulate all of the entrants on their hard work.”

Valerie Owen OBE, Lantra’s Chair, said: “I applaud all the finalists who show a real passion and dedication to training and the land-based industries. These awards attract the top learners from across Scotland every year who are committed to developing their skills and knowledge. It is vital for the future of these industries and for the wider Scottish economy that we continue to encourage and support new entrants.”

Picture captions: Finlay Ross with his Landbased and Aquaculture Learner of the Year award. Eamon Monaghan receives the CARAS award from SRUC Board Member and QMS Chairman Jim McLaren.

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