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Next Generation of Dairy Farm Managers Graduate

Next Generation of Dairy Farm Managers Graduate
Graduates of the Teagasc Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management are pictured with Andrew Doyle, Minister of State for Food, Forestry & Horticulture, Professor Gerry Boyle, Director Teagasc, Dr Marion Beecher, Teagasc Programme Coordinator & Dr Karina Pierce, UCD in Moorepark. Photo O'Gorman Photography.

The next generation of dairy farm managers graduated from the Teagasc/UCD Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management course today, Friday, 2 December. The graduates were presented with their diplomas by Minister of state at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Andrew Doyle TD, at an awards ceremony at the Teagasc Animal &Grassland, Research and Innovation Centre, Moorepark, County Cork.

The graduates came from a wide geographical spread, ranging from Donegal to Waterford. Past graduates have successfully found employment as farm managers in countries like Ireland, New Zealand and Saudi Arabia and some have returned to manage their home farm.

Participants on the course competed for a number of awards. The overall Student of the Year award went to Jerry Foley from County Cork. Jerry is a farm manager on a grass based system with a crossbred dairy herd in County Tipperary. The award is sponsored by the Farm Apprentice Board, the Master Farmers Committee and the Irish Farm Managers Association. 

The Grassland Student of year award went to Steven Patten from County Mayo. Steven’s detailed project on grassland management achieved the highest marks in the class. He is currently employed in Saudi Arabia. The award is sponsored by the Blackwater Discussion Group.

The Teagasc Professional Dairy Diploma aligns well with the FoodWise 2025 strategy on building human capital across the agri-food sector.  The strength of the Teagasc Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management programme is its unique blend of learning on top commercial dairy farms, combined with the input of Teagasc dairy researchers, dairy knowledge transfer specialists, education staff and industry experts.

Teagasc Director, Professor Gerry Boyle, said: “The programme is very firmly anchored in experience based learning and would not be possible without the very important commitment from host farmers. The host farmers on this programme are very successful business people, providing invaluable mentoring to students and very generously share their time and private farm information with students. I would like to thank the host farmers for their generous commitment to the programme. On behalf of Teagasc I would like to wish our graduates every success in their careers in the dairy industry. I look forward to following your success and working with you as established dairy farmers in the future”.

The Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management is a specific purpose level 7 award validated by University College Dublin. It’s the recognised standard for professional dairy farm managers.