These postgraduate scholarships not only provide financial support, but build connections with dairy specialists through supervision and mentoring, helping our students to become the next generation of industry leaders.
DairyNZ Master's Scholarships
DairyNZ Master’s scholarship offer a tremendous prospect to kick start a career in R&D. On completion of a Master’s degree in farm systems, it is expected that scholars will apply for employment opportunities at DairyNZ as either Doctoral Students studying specialist dairy science fields, or as Graduate Developers.
Each year, up to three scholarships of $30,000p.a., plus tuition fees, are on offer. Recipients are located at a DairyNZ office, working on a DairyNZ funded industry-relevant farm systems project and co-supervised by DairyNZ. This will ensure graduates are well-supported and mentored throughout their study, and will build strong connections within the industry.
Scholars will be able to fast track their Master's by undertaking their project while completing course requirements, taking just 18 months to complete their degree (or 12 months for scholars that have already completed Honours).
Relevant university, eligibility and criteria
The university of enrolment will be Lincoln, Massey or Waikato University, based on the most appropriate supervisor for the Master’s project.
- Applicants must be in their final year of, or completed, a bachelor degree in science, agricultural science, agricultural business or economics
- Be eligible to enrol in a Master's degree majoring in science, agricultural science, or agricultural business, at a New Zealand university
- Be either a New Zealand Citizen or New Zealand Permanent Resident
- Applicants must be willing to relocate, if required, to Hamilton, Palmerston North or Lincoln (determined by research locality), and be situated at a DairyNZ office
- The scholarship is available for up to 1.5 years and covers annual tuition fees plus $30,000 p.a.
Scholarships awarded based on:
- a strong motivation to progress in dairy R&D
- proof of existing connections and activity within the dairy industry
- academic merit
- evidence of leadership skills and critical thinking ability.
Annual application dates
Open: 1 June
Close: 10 August
Applications received outside of this period will not be accepted.
Documentation links and contact
Email the completed application form to firstname.lastname@example.org, along with supporting documents. If academic results are not available by closing date, results can be forwarded after August 10th on condition the initial application is received in time. All applications are acknowledged by email.
Colin Holmes Dairy Scholarships
Dairy Trust Taranaki (DTT) and DairyNZ co-fund the Colin Holmes Dairy Scholarships to support postgraduate research that will benefit the dairy sector. Up to two scholarships of $20,000 each are awarded annually.
The scholarships are named after Professor Colin Holmes in recognition of his outstanding service to the dairy sector during his 40-year research and lecturing career at Massey University prior to his retirement in 2007.
Relevant university, eligibility and criteria
Colin Holmes Dairy Scholarships are for students of Massey University.
1. The Colin Holmes Scholarships are intended for the support of students enrolled at postgraduate level in studies on farm production topics beneficial to the dairy industry, and where the research component of the course will occupy the full year (Master's and PhD programmes). Preference may be given to those applicants who undertake at least part of their studies in conjunction with existing research being undertaken at the Dairy Trust Taranaki Gibson Farm at Whareroa, Hawera.
2. Two scholarships of $20,000 each will normally be awarded annually as funds permit, and the scholarships will normally take the form of both a stipend and a contribution towards research costs, with the proportion used for stipend and research costs determined depending on the circumstances of the project involved. Applicants should discuss what proportion they consider appropriate, relating this to other scholarships and research funding they have already received.
3. Applications will be initially considered by the Applied Academic Programmes Scholarships Committee, who will recommend a short-list of applicants to members of the DTT and DairyNZ.
4. In recommending applicants, the Applied Academic Programmes Scholarships Committee shall take into account academic merit and other scholarships and bursaries held by the applicants.
5. The scholarships will be awarded for one year, and recipients will be encouraged to reapply again in subsequent years. Scholarships will not be awarded in those years where there are no suitable applicants.
6. The first payment of the stipend will be made in May, followed by equal-sized instalments every two months for a year. The component of the award to be used for research costs will be paid in two equal instalments to the chief supervisor of the applicant, one in May and the other six months later following satisfactory progress reporting to DTT and DairyNZ, via the DairyNZ Academic Committee.
7. Applications close on the 10 March in the year in which the award is to be made.
Annual application dates, contacts and links
Open: 10 December
Close: 10 March
To obtain an application form and for more information about this scholarship, visit the Massey University scholarships and awards webpage to read more about the Colin Holmes Dairy Scholarship.
Martin Correa Luna
Thesis title: Stocking rate and animal genotype on profitability complying with environmental impact requirements on OAD full-season milking in New Zealand
Project description: Urinary nitrogen (N) is the main source of N loss (leaching) from grazing systems. When milk production is increased through feeding more supplements (‘importing’ N into the farm system) then N excretion, and N loss, is also likely to increase.
Martin is comparing two spring-calving systems to explore N utilization efficiency (ENU) and N losses of cows. System 1 has once-a-day (OAD) milking with minimal supplements to reduce nitrate leaching and achieve target environmental outcomes. System 2 has twice-a-day milking with more supplement fed per cow.
These systems are being run on two research farms, with cow performance measures and calculated efficiencies being used to adapt a computer model to simulate these systems. Martin can then change variables in the model, such as stocking rate, fertiliser use, and feeding level, to determine the impact on environmental, productivity and profitability outcomes.
Comments on the scholarship: I am immensely grateful to the contribution of this scholarship allowing me to undertake this important personal and professional stage of my career, but I must say that the support was not only monetary. The DairyNZ Academic Committee gave me the intellectual support and encouraged me on this challenge so I can be confident that I will accomplish my project thesis in time.
Future plans: After completing my doctoral project I plan to continue working towards the development and refinement of sustainable pastoral models for dairy industries around the world, with a particular focus on the Australasian and Latin American contexts. My professional commitment is to produce research that bears a significant contribution to our current worldwide imperative to reduce environmental impact on food production. I plan to continue my research as a postdoctoral fellow aiming to contribute on sustainable grazing food production systems.
Year scholarship awarded: 2017, 2018
Thesis title: Behaviour of transition cows and understanding behaviour for the identification of cows at risk for disease
Project description: Dairy cows are most prone to disease during the three weeks before and after calving (‘transition period’) when the cow must adapt to increased physiological, metabolic and nutritional demands associated with end of gestation and onset of lactation. Early (subclinical) disease onset may be associated with subtle behavioural changes that cannot be detected through visual monitoring.
Precision technologies, such as accelerometers, enable behavioral states (lying, standing, moving) to be recorded continuously at low cost, making them an ideal tool for farmers to detect subtle behavioural changes that may be associated with significant events, such as calving, or onset of disease.
Stacey is examining the limitations of these technologies and then, using accelerometer data from a previous trial, she will compare the behaviour profiles of cows that were clinically healthy with those that were diagnosed with a disease event. This will determine if the technology can correctly identify animals at high risk of developing disease during the transition period.
Comments on the scholarship: The scholarship will be used to cover project costs associated with my PhD, including university fees, travel and conference costs, and publication costs. Opportunities to present my findings overseas and attend conferences as well as publishing my findings in international journals will allow the information I uncover to be disseminated to other researchers and farmers.
Future plans: My PhD is a stepping stone to further my research career in the dairy industry. In the future, I hope to be involved in the advancement of the welfare of grazing dairy cows and extension of precision technology in the dairy industry. This study is part of a process and therefore, there is potential to be involved in the application of this research at a farm level through the development of algorithms and decision-making resources based on the relationships explored between behaviour and disease from my study. Due to the increased consumer awareness and sensitivity to the treatment of animals, it is paramount that we optimally manage production animals in our care and minimise disease incidence on farm using whatever technology is available.
Year scholarship awarded: 2017, 2018
DairyNZ support for University of Waikato postgraduate students
Funded by DairyNZ to support University of Waikato postgraduate students in studies relevant to dairying. Up to six stipends of $5000 each are offered each year.
Eligibility and criteria
Students must be enrolled in postgraduate studies relevant to dairying.
Students are nominated by their supervisor, with recipients selected by a DairyNZ panel in May. These stipends are awarded based on relevance and importance to the dairy sector.
PhD thesis: From soil to groundwater: assessing the leaching potential of cadmium across gradients of soil type and land-use.
Supervisors: Dr Adam Hartland and Prof. Louis Schipper
In this study, Amir will deploy Diffusive Gradients in Thin films (DGT) probes in bores and piezometers to monitor the concentration of Cd in groundwater. This approach will be extended by measurement of the Cd isotope composition in order to characterise the Cd source(s) and biogeochemical processes affecting Cd mobilisation. This research represents a global first in assessing the impacts of fertilizer-derived Cd on the subsurface environment. Amir is also supported by The University of Waikato Doctoral Scholarship.
PhD thesis: Paddock scale nitrous oxide emissions from grazed pastures: quantification and mitigation
Supervisors: Prof. Louis Schipper, Dave Campbell, Liyin Liang, Jiafa Luo
Anne’s PhD focuses on understanding nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions and its management from intensively grazed, pastoral land. Data for her work are collected using an eddy covariance flux tower coupled to a quantum cascade laser absorption spectrometer. At the farm scale, Anne aims to identify the response of N2O emissions to common management practices – i.e. fertilisation, pasture renewal and sward diversity. Her approach targets potential mitigation options for reducing New Zealand’s N2O emissions.
PhD thesis: Rapid Quantification of Nitrate/Nitrite and Phosphate Concentrations in Freshwater: Enhancement of the ‘Diffusive Gradients in Thin-films’ Methodology
Supervisors: Professor Louis Schipper, Dr Adam Hartland, Professor Bill Henderson, Dr Gerald Rys (Ministry for Primary Industries)
Primary industries rely on finite biological and physical resources, the sustained long-term use of which is dependent upon our understanding of how these might be appropriately utilised and managed. To understand the relationship between land management decisions and water quality Thomas’ PhD seeks to test diffusive gradients in thin-films (DGT) for the measurement of nitrate/nitrite and phosphate, and furthermore enhance this methodology so that in-field analysis may be undertaken. DGT overcomes the major limitations of grab sampling, the current measurement technique, by addressing the high variability of nitrate/nitrite and phosphate. DGTs provide time integrated concentration data, are inexpensive, and easy to use.
For more postgraduate scholarships information
Contact Jennie Burke, Research Technical Advisor, DairyNZ, 021 244 3612, email@example.com.