A former Lincoln University student who excelled in a seed technology course as part of her Bachelor of Agricultural Science is thrilled to have received an annual prize from the NZ Seed Industry Research Centre.
Aimee Milne completed the Honours degree last year and gained the highest final mark in a plant science course that focused on organic seed production and germination.
Used as an incentive to attract more university graduates into the arable sector, the prize has a $2,000 value.
Ms Milne returned to campus recently for a visit, where she met NZ Seed Industry Research Centre manager, Ivan Lawrie.
Originally from Westport where her family runs a dairy farm, Ms Milne wants to embark on a career that involves drawing on her background knowledge to help farmers with their practices.
“I’d like to be out in the field, using research to assist in improving farm systems.”
She said she particularly enjoyed the seed technology course, as there was “nothing else like it”.
“I took the paper in fourth year. All my friends had done it the year before and said it was great. It’s the only standalone paper available as part of the Bachelor of Agricultural Science,” she said.
“I especially liked learning about organic seed production and finding out how to control weeds without sprays, which involved spending time at the Biological Husbandry Unit on campus. I also enjoyed carrying out germination tests.”
Mr Lawrie said that Ms Milne’s dairy farming background, while different from seed industry work, would still stand her in good stead for an arable career.
“The future of farming is more integrated than it used to be,” he said. “We work with dairy farmers to grow crops that work to perform an environmental mop-up of nutrients. It all fits together.”
Since completing her degree, Aimee has secured a fixed-term contract at Farmlands Co-operative, gaining the experience she needs to get her career off the ground.