19 January 2017
By Bryan Smyth
Christopher Kenny from a Dairy farm near Mourneabbey in North County Cork at twenty five years of age won his college round of the Farm Relief Services Memorial Scholarship which rewards students who show outstanding leadership ability. The National finals of the Farm Relief Services Memorial Scholarship took place at the Teagasc Colleges Challenge Day in Kildalton Agricultural College last Tuesday 17th January. The scholarship is run in conjunction with Macra na Feirme and a winner is selected to represent each Teagasc college as a National Finalist. Christopher was representing the Clonakilty agricultural students. In the National Final he gave his presentation on the leadership skills of Elon Musk CEO of SpaceX to a judging panel made up of Padraig Madden FRS Networks, Seán Finan National President of Macra and James Maher, Education Resource Coordinator with Teagasc.
Students from Kildalton Agricultural College were the overall winners in the annual Colleges Challenge Day beating off competition from six other agricultural colleges.
The challenge day has become an annual event since the introduction of the Leadership Module to the Level 5 Cert in 2008 and with all the challenges based around teamwork and leadership, it engrains in students the life skills they need to succeed in farming or any aspect of the wider industry.
Macra na Feirme National President Seán Finan congratulated all the students on their enthusiasm, encouraging them to be the leaders in the development of agriculture in the testing years ahead. He also acknowledged the number of students who have got involved in their local Macra clubs and reminded them that it is a means of keeping in touch with others in farming of a similar age and outlook when they leave agricultural college
Padraig Madden said, “This is the ninth year of the memorial scholarship and FRS is delighted to play our part in the development of the agricultural industry and this scholarship is just one of the ways we contribute.”
Speaking after the presentations Tony Pettit, Head of Education at Teagasc acknowledged the huge effort put in by staff and indeed students for making the leadership module an integral part of the Level 5 courses.