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Appointment of Programme Co-ordinator for Teagasc Dairy Farm Management Professional Diploma

Teagasc have announced the appointment of Marion Beecher as programme co-ordinator for its Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management. This new position will allow greater co-ordination of delivery of the Teagasc Dairy Farm Management programme and of the farm based professional work experience involved. Marion, who is a native of Co Cork is from a dairy farm background and recently completed a PhD in dairy nutrition. She will be based at Teagasc Animal & Grassland Research and Innovation Centre, Moorepark and will liaise closely with learners, host farmers and Teagasc staff involved in the programme and will lead programme promotion and recruitment.

Commenting on her appointment, Marion Beecher said: ‘’I am looking forward to working with students and host farmers and getting their feedback to develop and improve the programme as necessary’’. The closing date for applications for the programme is Friday 11 July.  Application packs are available on the Teagasc public website at Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management

Potential applicants who wish to discuss the course, and host farmers who may be interested in participating can contact Marion at marion.beecher@teagasc.ie or at 025 42457.

Dr Pat Dillon, Head of the Teagasc Animal and Grassland Programme emphasised the future farm managerial opportunities that will arise in the dairy sector given the scale of dairy farm expansion that is now occurring. Dr Dillon said: ‘’Meeting the Food Harvest 2020 targets for the dairy sector requires just as much emphasis on developing peoples’ capacity to manage larger dairy herds in a post quota environment, as on dairy facilities and husbandry. Regardless of whether young people intend returning to their own dairy farm, or managing dairy herds for others, the farm management expertise to be gained through the Teagasc Dairy Diploma will be invaluable’’.

Tony Pettit, Head of Education, Teagasc highlighted the importance of education and career planning for the next generation of dairy farmers. ‘’ Education is a key long term investment that farm families need to prioritise. Even non dairying farm families need to consider the opportunities dairy expansion offers their sons or daughters even if these opportunities are to be through collaborative ventures with existing dairy farmers,’’ according to Tony Pettit.

The core element of the Teagasc Professional Diploma is a two year professional work experience with approved dairy farmers. Participants are required to spend 12 months on a Teagasc approved host farm and then move to a new host.

Participants may complete part of their work experience overseas to maximise their exposure to different concepts and approaches. The programme also incorporates monthly discussion groups for the participants. The contact element of the programme is delivered in blocks and revolves around three modules: dairy farm management, dairy technology and dairy farm expansion and development.

The programme is delivered by Teagasc Moorepark researchers, Teagasc dairy knowledge transfer specialists and Teagasc college education staff.

The minimum entry requirement to the Teagasc Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management is a Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agriculture.

It is not essential that applicants have completed the Advanced Dairy programme option of the Advanced Certificate of Agriculture. Applicants who completed the advanced programme in Drystock for example can apply. Those holding major awards in agriculture at Level 7 and 8 are also eligible to apply. Applicants are required to undergo an interview selection process.

View the Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management for more information.