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Agriculture scholarship helps Marika on her way to dream career

/ Success Story
MARIKA Austin’s passion for the dairy industry began when she started a part-time job as a milker in Nullawarre.

“I had moved to the area from Mildura and my neighbour mentioned how milkers were always in demand. A job came up in Nirranda and I had no experience with cows but I applied and got the job. I absolutely love it now,” she said.

Marika said working with Tim Humphris and Marie Clark on Longroad Dairy was a great experience where they were currently milking 470 cows and expecting about 350 calves for autumn and 150 for spring.

She said she also had the opportunity to take home bull calves for raising which was made possible with the knowledge and skills she gained from South West TAFE and her employers.

Marika said she hadn’t worked for 12 years and never thought that she would find her passion at the age of 47

She said she had been working as a milker for about 12 months when she decided to enrol at South West TAFE.

“I went along to the field days and when I saw what South West TAFE was offering in agriculture courses I thought why not do something,” she said.

Not only did Marika enrol in the Certificate III in Agriculture (Dairy Production), she was also successful in gaining the DemoDAIRY Foundation Scholarship.

“It was great to win the scholarship. I was so surprised and it just made everything easier,” she said.

Marika is now half way through her two-year course and is loving the new skills she has gained so far.

“I’m really excited to start our calving units this year which will really help at work.

“I’m so lucky with my employers, it’s such a great environment to work in. They have given me so many opportunities and doing this course will allow me to do so much more,” she said.

Marika said she would recommend South West TAFE’s agriculture courses to anyone and also encouraged people to apply for the many scholarships on offer.

“Just have a go. Don’t wait until you’re my age to find your passion – do it while you’re young,” she said.

To find out about the scholarships on offer go to https://www.swtafe.edu.au/study/scholarships