Postgraduate student research projects focus on making farms more efficient and sustainable while improving animal welfare. These scholarships enable recipients to focus on their studies and foster professional connections within the sector. There is a vast range of opportunities for you to make a difference finding solutions for farmers.
I have been awarded a DairyNZ Postgraduate Scholarship to undertake a Doctorate of Philosophy that will evaluate the efficacy of different plantain cultivars to reduce nitrogen losses to the environment.
School: Southland Girls' High School 2006-2011
Undergraduate degree: Massey University 2012-2015
Masters of Agricultural Science Degree: Lincoln University 2020-2021
PhD: Lincoln University 2023-2026
There is increasing evidence that shows that plantain does reduce nitrogen losses, however, this evidence has mostly been collected from trials that have used an individual plantain cultivar. By examining various physical and chemical traits of different plantain cultivars, it is hoped that a series of tests can be developed that would easily determine the potential for nitrogen loss reduction within new and existing cultivars. The aim is to give farmers and regional councils clarity around what plantain varieties can successfully be used on farms.
Research: My project will involve plot trials in four locations throughout New Zealand on a variety of soil types. These trials will contain several different plantain cultivars and will evaluate traits of interest over 18 months. There will also be a metabolism stall trial conducted to validate the findings of the plot trials when a cultivar is fed to cows.
Future plans: My future plan is to continue a career in research as a scientist.
I have been awarded a DairyNZ Postgraduate Scholarship to undertake a Master of Science Research investigating the effects of different milk allowances on the behaviours and growth weights of Holstein-Friesian dairy bull beef calves.
School: Waikato Diocesan School for Girls
University: University of Waikato
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Science and Technology
Postgraduate Degree: Master of Science Research in Ecology and Biodiversity 2023-2024
Research: My project will involve undertaking research on Pāmu’s calf-rearing farm near Taupo. I am investigating the effects of different milk allowances (5 litres and 10 litres per calf per day) on the behaviours and growth weights of Holstein-Friesian dairy bull beef calves. This research will enhance our knowledge of calf-rearing practices that optimise animal welfare and productivity. This has relevance for the rearing of replacement dairy heifers as well as the management of non-replacement dairy calves, with potentially more of these animals reared for dairy beef production in the future.
Future plans: My plan is to stay involved with research to develop best practice recommendations for calf rearing. I currently work for DairyNZ and I would like to continue working for them to create a better future for dairy farmers. I hope to commence a PhD in the near future.
I have been awarded a Colin Holmes Masters Scholarship co- funded by Dairy Trust Taranaki and DairyNZ to undertake a Master of Agricultural Science in 2023 and 2024.
School: New Plymouth Boys' High School 2012-2016
University: Massey University 2017-2019
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Agricultural Science, Major in Horticulture
Postgraduate Degree: Masters of Agricultural Science Massey University 2023-2024
Research: The research project will be conducted on Dairy Trust Taranaki's Kavanagh farm and aims to establish a reliable soil carbon measuring methodology which can be used around the country to allow farms to accurately track soil carbon sequestration on their farms.
Future plans: My future plan is very open ended. I see myself going wherever I think I can contribute the most to the research, development and implementation of effective, sustainable and regenerative agriculture in New Zealand. Dairy is at the forefront of our agriculture industry and in many ways is best aligned to benefit from the development and adoption of more sustainable and more regenerative production practices.
I have been awarded a DairyNZ Postgraduate Scholarship to undertake a PhD that will evaluate farm systems to mitigate the risk of nitrate leaching.
School: Christchurch Girls' High School
Bachelor of Animal Science: Massey University 2017-2019
Masters of Animal Science: Massey University 2020-2021
PhD: Lincoln University 2023-2026
Research:The project will involve farm trials that will run in autumn and winter, the time of year when the risk of nitrate leaching is highest. In the autumn trial I will investigate the effect of different grazing management strategies on urinary nitrogen losses and within-day patterns of cow behaviour. In the winter trials I will compare nitrogen utilisation between two farmlets with different wintering systems, one representing current best practice ‘dairy now’ and the other using alternative mitigation strategies ‘dairy future’.
Future plans: My future plan is to continue my career in scientific research within the agricultural industry.