Student of the Year 2019
FBD Sponsored - 2019 Teagasc Student of the Year Award
Monday, 16 November at 7pm
The Teagasc/FBD Student of the Year Awards supported by FBD for over 30 years celebrates the achievements of students in Teagasc colleges and centres across the country.
Student of the Year 2019 Finalists
Jack Kingston, Co. Kildare
Jack Kingston completed a Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc, Oak Park, Carlow. He farms fulltime in Co. Kildare on a mixed enterprise of beef, cereals, oilseeds, root crops, potatoes. Jack found his Teagasc course to be very good all round and really enjoyed visiting other farms as part of the course. Jack is looking at opportunities to diversify based around his current farming model.
Michael Cunnane, Co. Mayo
Michael Cunnane completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Ballina. He moved home to take over the family farm on his father’s retirement and also works off the farm. Michael runs a suckler herd in Co. Mayo and found his Teagasc course invaluable in regard to grass management and improvement, use of paddocks, cost control, livestock husbandry and made lifelong friends.
Sarah Kearney, Co. Galway
Sarah Kearney completed the Advanced Certificate Programme in Drystock Management in Mountbellew Agricultural College. She farms with her father and also works off the farm. Together they run a suckler herd and sheep flock. Sarah found the course very useful in terms of grass management, livestock husbandry, and is looking to applying knowledge gained to her own farm.
Enda Farrell, Co. Longford
Enda Farrell completed the Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agricultural (Dairy Herd Management) in Teagasc Ballyhaise College and returned to a family partnership and established a dairy herd in 2020. Enda found the course to be highly beneficial particularly herd performance measurement, financial management and the need for work life balance. The course made Enda more keenly aware of sustainable farming approaches such as hedgerow and waterway management, protected urea, low emission slurry spreading and on-farm energy saving measures.
Steven Ryan, Co. Galway
Steven Ryan completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming. On taking over the home farm he decided that the farm needed to diversify to survive and having researched snail farming he decided that there was an opportunity there given the favourable Irish climate. Steven started a small snail farming operation and has continually expanded it with input from Bord Bia and Teagasc. He now sells and exports processed snails to the cuisine sector under his own brand and advocates that more young farmers should look at diversification opportunities.
Patrick Prior, Co. Leitrim
Patrick Prior completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Mohill. He owns an upland hill sheep farm and breeds registered Connemara ponies. Patrick found his Teagasc course to be ‘brilliant’ and ‘opened his eyes’ in areas such as grass management. He participated in a KT discussion group and found it a great way to share knowledge
Michael Kennedy, Co Limerick
Michael Kennedy completed Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming. He originally worked off farm, and having expanded the dairy herd made the decision to go full-time farming. Michael gained a lot from his Teagasc course - grass management, the building blocks of efficient low cost milk production and an increased awareness of sustainable farming requirements. Michael is involved in his local Teagasc Discussion Group and an IFJ Grass Management Group.
John O'Mahoney, Co Cork
John O'Mahoney completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Skibbereen. He has taken over the home farm and also works off farm. John runs a sheep flock on a mountain farm and also has a suckler herd. He plans to improve grass and soil fertility, breed more pedigree stock and expand his sheep housing.
Máire Keohane, Co. Cork
Máire Keohane completed the Level 6 Advanced Dairy Herd Management programme in Teagasc Clonakilty. After enrolling in the Teagasc Distance Education Green Cert she switched to the full-time advanced dairy programme as a better route to a dairying farming career. Máire found the advanced dairy programme to be very rewarding and enrolled in the Teagasc Professional Dairy Diploma in Dairy Farm Management and is gaining a lot experience from on-farm element, the coursework and class discussion groups.
Mark Drohan, Co Waterford
Mark Drohan completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Kildalton College. He farms full-time, runs a dairy herd and rears all calves up to 12 months of age and puts a major emphasis on the importance of good calf rearing. Mark prioritises soil fertility and strongly advocates grass measurement and the use of PastureBase. Has been a pioneer of robotic milking in Co. Waterford and is member of Robotic Milking Group. He is also involved in a Teagasc Discussion Group and a Purchase Group.
Andrew Naughton, Co. Clare
Andrew Naughton completed the Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agricultural (Dairy Herd Management) and found the course to very beneficial, learned a lot about farming, made friends and believes it had a big impact on his own personal development. Andrew is now studying Ag Science in Institute of Technology Tralee and helps on the beef farm at home and also works as a relief milker. He has gained knowledge about applying grass management and has bought a plate meter and is using PastureBase and eProfit monitor.
Michael Lavin, Co Sligo
Michael Lavin completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Ballymote and farms a fragmented suckler/sheep farm in Co. Sligo and has planted some forestry. Michael credits his Teagasc course with having a major beneficial impact on his farming activities and is actively applying all of his learning such as the Teagasc eProfit Monitor to his farm. He has found it to be very beneficial and has helped him focus on improving livestock quality, pasture reseeding, grass management, silage quality, herd health and soil fertility.
David Crowe, Co. Clare
David Crowe completed the Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farming in Teagasc Ennis. He farms part-time a suckler herd and works off the farm too. David found the Teagasc course to be very helpful – and felt it made him treat the farm as business, opened his mind to changing breeds and systems and more aware of environmental issues. He is going to consider diversification potential of the farm over the longer term.
Sean Quinlan, Co. Tipperary
Sean completed the Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agricultural (Dairy Herd Management) and returned to the home to work as herd manager in partnership on the family dairy farm. He also works as a relief milker to generate extra income. The Teagasc advanced dairy programme has prompted Sean to focus on growing more grass, quality and utilization and has started grass measuring and joined a local Grass Group. He is also focusing on increasing herd EBI.