Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Farm cadet scheme pauses to take stock

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Waipaoa Station has not advertised for 2024 cadet intake.
The Waipaoa Station Farm Cadet training course has had 75 young farmers graduate over the past 16 years. It has not advertised for the 2024 cadet intake. Photo: Waipaoa Station Cadet Training Trust/Facebook
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The Waipoa Station Farm Cadet training course will not have an intake of first-year cadets in 2024 as the governing trust completes a strategic review of the need and the sponsorship.

A pending change of ownership of the station is a factor, but not Cyclone Gabrielle and any recent storms, floods and damage, trust chair Tim Rhodes said.

Existing cadets on a two-year residency will not be affected by the temporary suspension.

Phase one of the strategic review has already established that the primary sector and sheep and beef industries want the cadet scheme to continue and that existing sponsors remain keen.

The present owner of Waipaoa Station and nearby Te Hau has already agreed that the 2025 intake can proceed, but that it will be subject to the wishes of any new owners.

Rhodes said since the cadet scheme was founded in 2007 the trust has had close working relationships with two station owners.

“We want to take the time over the next 18 months to really look at what we are providing and how things have changed since we started,” he said.

“With many more training institutions providing farm training since we began, it is a good time to look at our point of difference, where we fit in the tertiary sector, and what our future should be.”

The course has been popular and well respected, with graduates having a reputation for being well-rounded, confident, motivated and ultimately work ready.

Waipaoa has had 75 young farmers graduate over the past 16 years. The trust has not advertised for the 2024 cadet intake, Rhodes said.

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