Six applicants accepted into the 2017 Nuffield Scholarship programme

Six applicants have been accepted into the 2017 Nuffield Scholarship programme and as part of their scholarship each of them will get a €14,000 travel bursary as well as training to develop skills.

The objective of the scholarship is to identify future leaders of Irish agriculture and facilitate their ambition to bring about meaningful change for the benefit of their community, according to Nuffield Ireland.

With 32 applications received of a very high standard going through an interview process, the selection panel chose these six candidates to receive this award, Chairman of Nuffield Ireland, Bill O’Keeffe said.

I look forward working with our new scholars as they engage in the Nuffield Leadership development programme, work on their study topic and produce their report.

The new scholars for 2017 include Lorcan Allen, who is originally from Moate in Co. Westmeath. Allen is also an Agribusiness, markets and journalist, as well as a part-time suckler farmer.

Also selected for the scholarship was Owen Brodie, who is a self-employed dairy farmers from Virginia Co. Cavan.

Previously an agricultural journalist, Bryan Hynes, from Clarinbridge Co. Galway, is now a self-employed dairy farmer working in a farm partnership.

Niall O’Regan is another successful applicant. From Mallow in Co. Cork, O’Regan is a dairy farmer, and until recently was the country manager for LIC Ireland.

A recent entrant to dairying, Ed Payne, commenced milking in 2010. Farming in Tulsk, Co. Roscommon, Payne has been selected to partake in the Nuffield Scholarship for 2017.

Eamon Sheehan from Cuffesgrange, Co. Kilkenny started milking in 2013 is the final scholar. He previously owned a suckler herd with pedigree cows and also produces sport horses.

The new scholars will be introduced, and will give an outline of their study topic, at the Nuffield Ireland Annual Conference in the Castleknock Hotel on Friday, October 14, 2016.

The scholars will receive a travel bursary of €14,000, and will initially receive briefings and skills development over the coming months, the Chairman of Nuffield Ireland said.

Meanwhile, scholars will go on further training with fellow-Nuffield Scholars from around the world at a week-long Contemporary Scholars Conference which will be held in Brazil in March 2017.

After this initial stage, the scholars will undertake six weeks travel on one of the five Global Focus Programme (GFP) itineraries to about six countries (such as China, US, Brazil, Africa, Eastern Europe, Japan, India, Philippines and others), O’Keeffe said.

The scholars will travel in groups of eight to different countries, meeting farmers, companies and policymakers to get an understanding of the issues, trends and insights into global agriculture, and to see farming in a wide range of sizes, regulatory and climatic conditions, according to the Chairman.

Following a period of individual travel to research their topic of choice, the scholars will be expected to prepare a comprehensive 30-40 page report, to be presented to the Nuffield Farming Scholarship Trust, as well as various other Irish and international agricultural forums.

“I am delighted to welcome these new scholars to Nuffield Ireland, and look forward to seeing them develop their full potential, and play an important role for Irish Agriculture, their local community and for Nuffield in the years ahead,” he said.

These six new successful applicants, brings to 83 the total number of scholars who have been awarded Irish Nuffield scholarships since 1996.