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​Scholarship fosters passion for living and studying in regional Qld

With a rural family background and a strong interest in livestock and crop genetics, Emerald local Meg McCosker was eager to undertake an agricultural education after high school, and felt a scholarship would give her the boost she needed to make the most of her studies.

"Receiving a scholarship would enable me to focus on my studies and work towards achieving my career goals," she said.

Miss McCosker conveyed a clear passion for all aspects of her farm life, plus aspirations to make a difference when it comes to higher performing farm produce, and was awarded a Central Highlands Cotton Growers & Irrigators Association/Cotton Australia scholarship.

Her family operates a mixed cattle and irrigated cropping enterprise at Emerald, including cotton, peanuts, cereal crops, and a registered Wagyu stud. With that diverse background and experience she enrolled in the CQUniversity Bachelor of Agriculture - delivered in partnership with Emerald Agricultural College - because she felt it would broaden her knowledge and practical skills even further, as well as offer a career pathway towards farm technology and genetic research.

"It has been a great year. The practical sessions at either Emerald Agricultural College or their property Berrigurra were interesting as the theory covered was applied in everyday situations," said Miss McCosker. "It has definitely reaffirmed my choice to study a Bachelor of Agriculture and my interest in plant and animal genetic research."

"The scholarship is very helpful when studying as it contributes to the costs of the course."

In addition to her agricultural studies and career aspirations, Miss McCosker feels it is important to contribute to her regional community on a social and cultural level too. The fact that she was able to undertake tertiary studies regionally has presented the opportunity to continue to be involved in her rural community.

This year Miss McCosker was invited to be a student panellist in a community forum as part of Queensland Country Life's 'Grow Queensland' series.

She used the opportunity to share her thoughts on life as a young adult in regional Australia, saying she has always been able to find things to do in her community, and was looking forward to her career in agriculture.

"I enjoy meeting new people and challenging myself with new experiences," she said. "Study has been very interesting and meeting and working with other students has been lots of fun."

When asked what she would say to other young people who may be considering scholarships, Miss McCosker replied: "Applying for the Scholarship is definitely a great idea as it can be used for your [course] fees or residential fees."

"The process isn't difficult so it is worth having a try."

The Central Highlands Cotton Growers & Irrigators Association and Cotton Australia are once again offering scholarships to students interested in studying with QATC in 2017, as are several other organisations including the Queensland Government Department of Agriculture and Fisheries. Meat and Livestock Australia, and mining company Glencore.

For more information visit our Scholarships page, or browse courses online.


Photo: Meg McCosker (far right) is grateful a scholarship has helped her pursue a local agricultural education and meet like minded students.

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