Zespri has launched a new scholarship for up to five students each year studying Massey University’s Bachelor of Horticultural Science degree.
The move is prompted by the kiwifruit marketer recognising its industry will need more trained people to help reach its massive growth goals in the next 10-plus years.
“Zespri is on track to nearly double global sales from 2010 levels to $4.5 billion by 2025 and we can only do this by attracting the right people with the right skills,” says Zespri’s innovation team leader of supply chain Dr Kylie Phillips.
She says the Zespri Science Scholarships are aimed at students considering a career in the fast-growing kiwifruit industry.
Each scholarships is worth up to $15,000 during three years and include mentoring opportunities, exposure to and support from the wider industry.
“Zespri’s extensive research and development programme is building scientific understanding of how best to grow and deliver premium quality kiwifruit to consumers all over the world.
“Technology and science are changing our industry and the horticulturalists of tomorrow will need different skillsets from the growers and postharvest operators of today,” says Kylie.
“With the industry growing strongly in NZ and around the world, we want to attract talented young people with the skills to support our value chain supply premium Zespri Kiwifruit that our consumers demand.
“This is a really exciting time to be starting a career in the kiwifruit industry,” says Kylie.
Head of Massey’s School of Agriculture and Environment Professor Peter Kemp says this investment will be a great opportunity for students and the kiwifruit industry.
“As one of the world’s leading horticultural companies, Zespri’s investment shows additional support for the degree and the students that it will produce. The Bachelor of Horticultural Science welcomed its first cohort this year, aiming to fulfil a real need in a booming industry.
“It was created with close engagement from industry leaders, including Zespri. By working closely with industry, we will continue to produce students with the broad knowledge they will need to excel within this exciting industry and prepare them for future jobs,” says Peter.
Scholarship applicants should show how they’re helping, or planning to help, develop the NZ horticultural industry, with a particular emphasis on kiwifruit. They should show their own personal passion and commitment to NZ kiwifruit and horticulture as a career.
This scholarship is part of Zespri’s broader programme of education and personal development at every age and stage from science in junior schools, to scholarships for tertiary study, and career development for future and current leaders of the kiwifruit industry.
Applications are now open and close January 31, 2020.
For more information, visit: www.massey.ac.nz/massey/admission/scholarships-bursaries-awards/other-scholarships