Building dairy futures

Since the program’s inception in 2016, dozens of dairy farm staff have chosen to study at South Regional TAFE for a Certificate III in Dairy Production or a Certificate IV in Agriculture with a dairy emphasis.

The Certificate III program takes up to a year to complete with the farmer providing the practical skills development and South Regional TAFE providing theoretical components across a wide range of subjects. These courses are delivered either as a traineeship or as a flexible training arrangement.

Serpentine dairy farmer Geoff Manning said the training was highly valuable and had led to positive outcomes for his trainee Bailey Ferguson who graduated last year. “The only way for staff to learn about dairy farming is to go through training and the Certificate III gave this to Bailey,” Mr Manning said.

Bailey Ferguson said he thoroughly enjoyed the training and felt more confident working in the industry. “Having completed the Certificate III, I’ve gained some very useful knowledge about dairy farming and this has helped me to gain confidence,” Mr Ferguson revealed.

Western Dairy trainee manager Rob La Grange said the trainees’ career prospects had improved as a result of gaining the qualification. Mr La Grange visits trainees on a monthly basis to assess their progress and said feedback had been positive from all parties. “Trainees and farmers appreciate each other’s commitment to the program and value their working relationship. Most graduates remain employed on the farms they have trained on and continue to develop and succeed,” Mr La Grange explained.

Western Dairy is also committed to creating dairy employment and training opportunities for Year 12 graduate students and is working with South Regional TAFE, Denmark Agricultural College and Harvey Agricultural College to place suitable high school graduates with dairy farms across the state.

Prospective trainees and farmers should contact Mr La Grange for more information on 0448 939 344. Visit Western Dairy’s YouTube channel Western Dairy to see testimonials from farmers and trainees.

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