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Search begins for top trainees in Scotland’s rural industries

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Lantra Scotland’s Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards are now underway, with nominations for the 2019 event officially open.

Rural employers, colleges and schools are being asked to put forward their best learners, and to help recognise and promote the industry’s best talent. The awards are a fantastic platform for trainees of all ages, giving them a springboard to succeed in their respective careers, as well as highlighting the need for businesses to invest in new entrants, training and skills development.

The award categories span a range of rural and environmental industries, from agriculture, aquaculture and equine, to fisheries management, environmental conservation, game and wildlife, horticulture, trees and timber and land-based engineering.

As well as prizes for Overall Winner, Runner-up and Modern Apprentice of the Year, there are also awards for Higher Education, School Pupil and Secondary Schools, CARAS (Council for Awards of Agricultural Societies), Jean’s Jam for inspirational tutor and the Tam Tod Trophy for outstanding young learner.

The winners will be announced at a prestigious ceremony at the DoubleTree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro on Thursday 7thMarch 2019, hosted by farmer and stand-up comedian, Jim Smith.

Current Overall Winner is game and wildlife trainee, Megan Rowland, from Dornoch in Sutherland: “Winning the award for learner of the year has been a great boost to me personally. As an ambassador for the British Deer Society and a Lantra Scotland Industry Champion, I actively promote careers in our industry, as a diverse range of people working in it will bring different skills and perspectives. I hope that what I’m doing will help encourage more new entrants of all ages to get involved.”

Kevin Patrick, Director of Lantra Scotland, believes that the awards can make a valuable contribution to the sector: “With all the incredibly diverse and rewarding careers on offer in the land-based, aquaculture and environmental conservation industries, it’s clear the sector makes a significant contribution to Scotland’s economy, particularly in rural areas. By recognising and celebrating the success of the country’s top learners, their employers and training providers, our awards can highlight the hard work and achievements of everyone involved. Ultimately, we want to ensure that our industries are supplied with the very best talent, bridging skills and recruitment gaps to build a vibrant and successful economy. Inspirational learners like Megan are great ambassadors for our sector, and we’re very proud of the difference our awards can make to the self-confidence and careers of all our finalists and winners.”

The closing date for nominations is Friday 9th November. To enter, call Lantra on 01738 310364, email scotland@lantra.co.uk or visit – www.scotland.lantra.co.uk/learner-year

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