Scholarship boosts uni study

Ann RawlingsCountryman
Lauren Rayner, who is a student at Murdoch University, is the winner of the Royal Agricultural Society's Bendat Family Youth Scholarship.
Camera IconLauren Rayner, who is a student at Murdoch University, is the winner of the Royal Agricultural Society's Bendat Family Youth Scholarship. Credit: Danella Bevis

The future in agriculture looks bright for Murdoch University student Lauren Rayner, the recipient of this year’s Bendat Family Youth Scholarship.

In her first year of tertiary studies, Ms Rayner is undertaking a three-year double major in animal science and crop and pasture science.

She said the scholarship, provided by the Royal Agricultural Society of WA, would help her immensely in her journey towards a career in agriculture.

“I love the atmosphere of the Royal Show, and I love what RAS WA does, so I thought I could apply for the scholarship and, if successful, I could represent (RAS WA),” she said.

Ms Rayner plans to use the funds from the scholarship to pay for living costs such as rent, so she can dedicate more time to study.

“University is pretty in-depth at the moment,” she said.

Ms Rayner, whose family operates a sheep and cropping operation west of Brookton, is no stranger to hard work, both on the farm in her schooling life.

She attended WA College of Agriculture, Narrogin in Years 11 and 12, graduating in 2016 as dux and distinguishing herself across a wide range of subjects.

After a well-earned gap-year break, she said agriculture had always been a passion, though determining which career to choose after university would be more a matter of natural progress.

“There are lots of opportunities available when I finish. I love Merino sheep and the stud industry, but I don’t know if I will choose that pathway, or work with wool. I could also go down the agronomy pathway,” she said.

“The big thing for my area (Brookton) is sheep and cropping, and I would like to stay local. My plan is to return to the country once I finish university.”

RAS WA president Paul Carter said such scholarships helped to encourage young people to consider a career in agriculture.

“Lauren is a great member of the agricultural industry of WA,” he said.

“We look forward to her participating in RAS WA events in the lead up to this year’s IGA Perth Royal Show.”

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