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Articles and stories about the RAS Foundations and its grant and scholarship recipients

Articles and stories about the RAS Foundations and its  grant and scholarship recipients

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A good news story

25 Sep 2017

Three little letters can change a life and they certainly did for Hannah Southcott. Read more

RAS Scholarship Applications Closing Soon

1 Sep 2017

Scholarships - they are at the very heart of the not-for-profit Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS). The RAS offers numerous valuable scholarships each year through its charitable arm, the RAS Foundation. Applications close on 30 September 2017 on four of these scholarships. They are; The JB Fairfax Award for Rural and Regional Journalism Sydney Royal Wine Study Scholarship RAS Foundation Rural Scholarship Sydney Royal Dairy Produce Scholarship The JB Fairfax Award for Rural and Regional Journalism is offered to a journalism student who has a passion and desire to report on issues affecting rural and regional communities. It includes a $10,000 scholarship as well as practical work experience in the commercial media and the Sydney Royal Easter Show Media Centre. The JB Fairfax Award for Rural and Regional Journalism was established to encourage quality coverage of rural and regional affairs by Australian journalists. It was created through a donation by Mr John B Fairfax AO and is managed by the RAS Foundation. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation to find out more about the scholarship and to complete the online application form. The Sydney Royal Wine Study Scholarship is a grant designed to reward a tertiary student who is passionate about pursuing a career in the Australian wine industry. A number of past recipients of the Wine Scholarship have gone on to successful careers as winemakers, either at their own wineries of for some of the nation’s leading winemaking names. Applications for the 2018 award can be completed online through the RASF website http://www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation/scholarships-and-grants/sydney-royal-wine-study-scholarship/ The RAS Foundation Rural Scholarship is an initiative designed to ensure an increased flow of skilled people to rural and regional NSW communities. Scholarships are awarded to tertiary students based on financial need and desire to play an active part in the future of rural NSW. A record 64 recipients received grants in 2017. Applications for the RASF 2018 Rural Scholarships can be accessed online at http://www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation/scholarships-and-grants/ras-rural-scholarships/ The Sydney Royal Dairy Produce Scholarship aims to foster the development of Australia’s next generation of NSW dairy produce industry leaders. As well as a grant towards full-time or part-time study the successful recipient will also have the opportunity to steward at the 2018 Sydney Royal Cheese & Dairy Produce Show in February. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit http://www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation/scholarships-and-grants/sydney-royal-dairy-produce-scholarship/ to find out more about the scholarship and to complete the online application form. Murray Wilton, General Manager Agriculture & Sydney Royal Easter Show, is pleased to announce that 2018 scholarships will increase, with $6000 granted to full-time students and $3000 for part-time study, up from $5000 and $2500. “The RAS Foundation is aware of the increasing costs for country students and the incredible difference our scholarships can make,” Mr Wilton said. “Moving away from home in order to continue with education is a big decision and one that carries significant and growing costs for students. Hopefully the increase in our scholarship will make a big difference as they pursue higher education,” he said. Applications for the four scholarships detailed above close at 5pm, September 30, 2017. Ends. Visit www.rasf.org.au for more information on the RAS Foundation. For further information please contact: Roger White, Manager, Public Relations p (02) 9704 1453 m 0478 092 425 e rwhite@rasnsw.com.au Read more

Calling all scholars

4 Aug 2017

RAS Foundation Scholarships provide a financial helping hand to assist students achieve their education goals. Over the past seven years 371 Scholarships - for a total of $1,721,500 - have been awarded. Students with a passion for rural issues and a commitment to playing a part in shaping the future of rural and regional NSW are encouraged to apply. Thanks to the donations from our generous supporters, Rural Scholarships are open to students of any age and embrace a diverse range of tertiary or vocation education and training studies. Amongst the 64 recipients of the 2017 Rural Scholarship recipients are the following four outstanding applicants: Bridget Bennett - studying a Bachelor of Medical Radiation Science at the University of Newcastle. “In completing my course I wish to move back out to a rural area such as Orange, or even Dubbo (if a cancer clinic is approved and built before I've finished my course) to work as a fully qualified Radiation Therapist.” Thomas Tsang - studying a Bachelor of Medical Studies/Doctor of Medicine at the University of New South Wales. “There is always a divide between rural and urban healthcare, therefore I would like to contribute to narrowing this gap. Growing up in Taree, I understand the challenges a country town faces in getting fair and quality medical services. I am keen to return to regional/rural areas, to contribute to narrowing the gap between the rural and urban healthcare.” Tamara Heir - studying a Bachelor of Veterinary Biology/Bachelor of Veterinary Science at Charles Sturt University. “ I represent part of the future of science and agriculture in rural and regional NSW and this is a responsibility I do not take lightly. I am working my very hardest to study and learn all I can.” Katherine Reid - studying a Bachelor of Rural Science at the University of New England. “My reason for studying this course is to improve the standard and quality of production, to facilitate further research and learning into different methods of producing agricultural goods. I hope this degree can give me the skills to strengthen the industry.” Read more

The White Stuff

1 Aug 2017

According to a study jointly conducted by the CSIRO and University of Adelaide, one in six Australians have stopped drinking milk and consuming other dairy products – often in the misguided belief that dairy is bad for their health. Of the 1184 adults surveyed, it was found that the majority of those avoiding dairy (74 per cent) were doing so because they were keen to relieve gastrointestinal problems such as cramping, bloating and wind, while fewer participants admitted avoiding dairy because they believed it was fattening. It’s concerning, but the figures all come down to misinformation, says Blake Robinson, Accredited Practising Dietitian at Dairy Australia (dairyaustralia.com.au), who adds many of those limiting dairy for health reasons are self-diagnosed. “There’s clearly a lot of noise and confusion out there because we know that only one in ten Australians is meeting the daily dairy serve recommendations,” he says. “However I don’t know that there’s any reason to panic about what this study means for our dairy industry – fresh milk consumption has been stable over the last few years and we’re proud to be able to say we’re the only market globally to maintain that.” While dietitians are concerned about what a decrease in dairy consumption could do to our health, what does the CSIRO study mean for our $13 billion dollar dairy industry? At first glance, the figures look great. According to Dairy Australia, Australian milk production increased by nearly 360 million litres (or 3.8 per cent) in 2014/15, and a paper by the Department of Primary Industries recently showed that global demand for Australian dairy products is steadily increasing and expected to grow, driven by demand in China, South East Asia and the Middle East. “Dairy farmers supply a 40/60 split to domestic and export so domestic consumption really is half the story,” says Robinson. One person who is certainly not worried is Country Valley (countrydairy.com.au) dairy farmer, John Fairley whose family has been in the industry on and off for over 160 years. While alternative milk and juices have enjoyed what Fairley calls ‘stealth marketing’, they’ve failed to make a dent in the market nation-wide, and it’s been his experience that the numbers of those who enjoy conventional dairy products are only continuing to grow. “From my personal experience, I can tell you Country Valley continues to do well, and nationally we know the fresh milk market goes up by an average of 1.5 per cent each year,” he says. Similarly, South Coast Dairy (southcoastdairy.com.au) has recently reported a 54 per cent jump in demand for local milk over a one-month period, after social media campaigns demanded a boycott of cheaper milk. But what of the figures released by research company IBIS, which showed that the growth rates for alternative milk such as soy and almond at an average of 5.9 per cent are eclipsing that of traditional dairy? What do we make of new milk products such as Made by Cow (madebycow.com.au) Cold Pressed Milk (a happy medium between totally raw and pasteurised milk), which has just hit the market at $5 for a 750ml bottle? Happily, a 2011 report for Soy Australia Ltd shows Australians, on average, only drink three litres of soy milk per capita, per year – a far cry from the 106.8 litres of cow’s milk we consume. And as for the new milk products, there’s every chance they’ll take those turning their backs on dairy to come back to moo, says Made by Cow’s founder, Saxon Joye. “Since we hit Harris Farm shelves in June, we’ve been told that the volume in their milk category has actually increased,” he confides. “And it’s not that our product is cannibalising others, but that our presence is perhaps pointing to other products on the shelves and increasing those figures – it’s really quite exciting.” Read more

Sydney Royal Wine Committee announces new Wine Scholarship

1 Aug 2017

The Sydney Royal Wine Committee, in partnership with the Royal Agricultural Society (of NSW) Foundation has announced a new and exciting industry scholarship opportunity to benefit a young person passionate about the Australian Wine industry. The Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship is the result of the continued success of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW’s KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show. The successful scholarship recipient will receive a fully paid position at the Australian Wine Research Institute's Advanced Wine Assessment Course (AWAC) taking place in Adelaide from Monday 20th – Thursday 23rd November, 2017. This new scholarship initiative has been made possible through an online auction of excess wine from the previous year’s Sydney Royal Wine Show, with the specific purpose of raising funds to support the Australian Wine industry through grants and scholarships. Chair of the Sydney Royal Wine Committee, Sally Evans, said it made sense to utilize the high-quality excess wine from the show to create career opportunities for young people in the wine industry. “We are delighted to introduce this new scholarship, funded by the sale of surplus wine show stock. It provides us with the opportunity to support the Australian Wine industry through the development of outstanding young industry professionals,” Ms Evans said. “The AWAC course is a world-class programme and we’re thrilled to provide this opportunity to a young person in our local wine industry,” she said. Value of Scholarship: $6,000 Applications Open: 1st August 2017 Applications Close: 17th September 2017 Eligibility Guidelines: Open to applicants 30 years and under. Applicants must be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident. Applicants must be employed in the Australian Wine Industry or engaged in study in a related course. Applications can be made online by visiting www.rasnsw.com.au/scholarships For further information, including high resolution images, please contact: Roger White – Manager, Public Relations M: 0478 092 425 | P: 02 9704 1453 | E: rwhite@rasnsw.com.au About the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS) Foundation: The RAS Foundation is a charitable foundation that encourages educational opportunities and helps build strong and sustainable rural and regional communities through a range of targeted grants and scholarships. Visit www.rasf.org.au for more information on the RAS Foundation. Read more

A tale of four Scholars

20 Jul 2017

RAS Foundation Scholarships provide a financial helping hand to assist students achieve their education goals. Students with a passion for rural issues and a commitment to playing a part in shaping the future of rural and regional NSW are encouraged to apply. Scholarships are open to students of any age and embrace a diverse range of tertiary or vocation, education and training studies. Amongst the 64 Rural Scholarship recipients for 2017 are the following students… Ryley Wickham, 17-years-old, has travelled 240kms from his hometown of Goonoo Goonoo to study a Certificate IV Agriculture at Tocal College. Ryley believes the future of farming and the ability to maximise the potential of the land lies in innovative technology. Kelsea Boots, 23-years-old, has relocated from Camden to Orange in order to complete her Bachelor of Dental Science at Charles Sturt University. The urgent need for rural health practitioners drives Kelsea’s goal of establishing a flying dental service to provide essential oral care to remote areas of Australia. Samuel Scarlett, 20-years-old, has moved from Cooma to Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga in order to study a Bachelor of Animal Science (Honours). Samuel wants to keep the merino industry thriving by investigating the role of genetics and nutrition in wool. Anne Johnston, 21-years-old, has transferred 400kms from home in Moree to study at the University of New England, Armidale. Anne hopes her Bachelor of Education (K-12) will enable her to teach in a rural community and help to keep youth thriving in rural towns.   Read more

Opportunity for Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship winner

10 Jul 2017

Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship - applications open 1 August 2017 Established in 1826, the Sydney Royal Wine Show is one of the most prestigious wine shows in Australia. Attracting over 2,200 entries annually from over 300 Exhibitors across Australia, this is the opportunity for producers to have their product benchmarked against a cross-section of key Australian competitors, as well as the opportunity to win a coveted Sydney Royal Medal or Trophy. Along with a judging panel selected by Chair of Judges Samantha Connew and the RAS of NSW Wine Committee, Stewards play a valuable role ensuring each day runs smoothly. Acting as a Steward for the Sydney Royal Wine Show provides unique insight into the wine industry and counts as relevant experience towards an Associate Judge role in the future. The Sydney Royal Wine Show will welcome Viticulture student Hannah McKay from Charles Sturt University as a Steward this year. Employed by the iconic winery Vasse Felix in Margaret River, Western Australia, Ms McKay studies by distance travelling regularly from WA to NSW for her degree. This commitment to her education and her goal of becoming a leading female viticulturist saw Ms McKay awarded the 2017 Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship. The Sydney Royal Wine Committee along with the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Foundation (RASF) offers an annual tertiary scholarship, which honours the memory and contribution of Graham Thorp, Chair of the Sydney Royal Wine Committee from 1984 - 1990. Sydney Royal Wine Committee Chair, Sally Evans, commended Ms McKay for her inspiring vision of how she plans to be involved in the future success of the Australian wine industry.  “It’s wonderful to be able to offer the opportunity of stewarding at the KPMG Sydney Royal Wine show to Ms McKay, who will benefit greatly from the learnings and networks she will receive access to. She not only impressed us with her passion for viticulture but also her desire to play a leading role in encouraging more young women into the wine industry,” Ms Evans said. Ms McKay started working in the vineyards near her family home in the Southern Highlands of NSW after walking away from an office job and fell in love with the industry. Her interest lies in combining traditional farming practices with land management techniques and native species and exploring more sustainable ways of growing wine grapes in Australia. “I’m thrilled to be selected for this amazing scholarship and excited about the opportunities it will bring as I work towards my goal of being a leading female viticulturist,” “I am excited to connect with other like-minded people across Australia at the upcoming wine show and will use this scholarship to strengthen the precision and quality of Australian viticulture and wine,” she said. RAS Foundation Executive Officer, Kate Ross, said the scholarship offers a welcome financial boost to our next generation of wine industry leaders as they strive to excel in their chosen careers. “The fact that our 2017 scholarship recipient has chosen to relocate far from home and undertake distance studies while working in the wine industry shows a real commitment,” Ms Ross said. Applications for the 2018 Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship open on 1 August, the scholarship offers $6,000 for full-time study or $3,000 towards part-time education. www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation/scholarships-and-grants/sydney-royal-wine-scholarship/ Read more

Applications open for JB Fairfax Award for Rural and Regional Journalism

3 Jul 2017

July 3, 2017 The rich tradition of Australian rural journalism is being celebrated once more through the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS) Foundation's JB Fairfax Award. Applications have now opened for the 2018 JB Fairfax Award for Rural and Regional Journalism, the scholarship now entering its tenth year. This year there is a new twist to the Award, with the traditional request to write on a subject selected by the RASF replaced with an invitation to write an inspirational piece on a member of rural or regional Australia. RAS Foundation Executive Director Kate Ross says there is no end to the long list of colourful and inspirational characters who have and continue to make up the fabric of rural and regional Australia; “This is a golden opportunity for our journalists of the future to uncover some of the great stories that are out there but have in many cases gone unheralded,” Ms Ross said. This year the JB Fairfax Award scholarship has received a significant boost, with the addition of an internship opportunity with the ABC in Brisbane working on the iconic Landline and Country Hour programs and in the online newsroom. This internship will complement a suite of internships the award winner will have access to, including with Fairfax Agricultural Media’s The Land newspaper and the RAS Media Team at the Sydney Royal Easter Show. The JB Fairfax Award also includes a $10,000 cash prize. The most recent winner of the JB Fairfax Award was Singleton’s Elise Pfeiffer, who as part of her $10,000 scholarship, worked with the media team covering the many stories that emerged from the 2017 Sydney Royal Easter Show. Elise, a third year Journalism student at the University of Newcastle, says it was an invaluable learning opportunity and rates it as one of her best life experiences to date; “As a part of the scholarship I travelled down to Sydney to participate in the Sydney Royal Easter Show internship program - a fast paced two-week glimpse into the world of media,” said Elise. “As a third and final year journalism student, the opportunities the internship program offered were unlike any other work placement I could have dreamed of, whether it was being a part of a live television broadcast or assisting in a photoshoot. “Meeting John Fairfax was definitely one of the invaluable and defining moments of my time in Sydney,” Elise said. Applications close 30 September, 2017 with the successful recipient announced early 2018. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation to find out more about the scholarship, the editorial requirements and to complete the online application form. The JB Fairfax Award for Rural Journalism was established to encourage quality coverage of rural and regional affairs by local journalists. It operates through a generous annual donation by Mr John B Fairfax and is managed by the RAS Foundation. For further information, including high resolution images, please contact: Roger White – Manager, Public Relations Royal Agricultural Society of NSW P: (02) 9704 1453| E: rwhite@rasnsw.com.au   About the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS) Foundation: The RAS Foundation is a charitable foundation that encourages educational opportunities and helps build strong and sustainable rural and regional communities through a range of targeted grants and scholarships. Visit www.rasnsw.com.au/foundation/  for more information on the RAS Foundation. Read more
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