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Agriculture Learner of the Year Awards 2015 now open for nominations

Lantra Scotland’s Agriculture Learner of the Year Award 2015 now open for nominations.

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Lantra Scotland, the sector skills council for the land-based, environmental and aquaculture industries, is calling on all employers, instructors, tutors, trainers, teachers and mentors working in Scottish agriculture, to put forward their nominations for the Agriculture Learner of the Year Award 2015.

Now in their 12th year, the Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of young people and new entrants embarking on their careers. They are open to all vocational learners, students and Modern Apprentices working in the following sectors: agriculture, aquaculture, equine, fisheries management, environmental conservation, game and wildlife, horticulture, trees and timber and land-based engineering.

The awards also celebrate the achievements of secondary schools, their pupils and higher education students through the recently introduced Rural and Urban Secondary Schools Award, Land-based Curriculum for Schools Learner of the Year and the Higher Education Award.

Kevin Patrick, Interim Director of Lantra Scotland, comments on why nominating young learners is such an important step towards bridging skills gaps and building a vibrant, successful economy in Scotland:

“Last year we received a record number of nominations across all our sectors, and this year we are looking to attract even more. The Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards are the only vehicle we have as an industry to reward and celebrate the efforts of our learners and encourage more people to take an interest in land-based careers. This is a fantastic opportunity to put forward your nominees and give them the recognition they deserve. If you have a Modern Apprentice working for you, a student or someone in vocational training that you believe is an inspiration to others in terms of their commitment, skills and work ethic, then please put them forward for nomination.

“The land-based, environmental and aquaculture industries are key to providing the raw materials for a strong and vibrant Scottish economy, from the multi-billion pound food and drink sector to construction, land management and conservation.”

“These important industries cannot survive without well-trained, highly skilled people, but with an ageing workforce threatening the long-term viability of many sectors, this is becoming an increasing challenge. That’s why it is vitally important that we work with employers to promote the many exciting opportunities there are in the land-based, environmental or aquaculture sectors for young people and career changers. Nominating talented learners for these awards is an important first step in this process.”

Cameron Smith, who scooped the Agriculture Learner of the Year Award in 2014, talks about how winning the award and embarking on a Modern Apprenticeship in Agriculture has helped progress his career:

“I was so proud to win the Lantra Scotland Agriculture Learner of the Year Award in 2014.Undertaking a Modern Apprenticeship in Agriculture has been the perfect training ground for me, and winning this award has given me the confidence to succeed. The apprenticeship gives me all the hands-on experience I need, while the bookwork keeps me in touch with Oatridge, so I can work towards some other qualifications. At this stage it’s all about continuing my education and training, to build up my knowledge and skills and learn as much about every aspect of agriculture that I can. Following that, my ambition is to be self-employed and run my own agricultural business.”

Nominations for the Land-Based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards 2015 can be made until Friday 7th November 2014. After the nominees are shortlisted, the award finalists are announced in early 2015, followed by the winners at the 12th Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards in March 2015.

To find out more about all the awards on offer, visit, call 01738 646762 or email


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