A student from Burley-in-Wharfedale has received a dairy farming scholarship which will see him take a full-time job between his studies.
Oliver Wadsworth, 19, was presented with the Velcourt Dairy Scholarship during a dedicated ceremony at Harper Adams University.
Mr Wadsworth is in the second year of a BSc Agriculture programme at the Shropshire university, which has helped him to make a start in the farming career he has dreamed of despite having very little prior agricultural experience.
The former Notre Dame Sixth Form College, Leeds, student competed against fellow Harper Adams students to secure the Velcourt award, which provides funding to cover some of his tuition fees, plus a full-time job with Velcourt during the sandwich year of his degree course.
All Harper Adams students complete one year in industry before returning to the campus for the fourth and final year, to complete their studies. Later in 2014, he will take up his position on a Velcourt dairy farm.
Mr Wadsworth said: “The Velcourt Dairy Scholarship means an awful lot to me as it represents an amazing opportunity to be able to push myself to be the best I can be, whilst having the backing of an industry-leading company, which I know produces some of the best farm managers in the world.
“I wish to thank the company for placing faith in me by awarding this scholarship. Being from a non-agricultural background, I hope that this achievement is proof to other potential future farmers that not having a family farm need not put them at a disadvantage.”
He has pursued a range of farming opportunities before he applied to Harper Adams. With the right combination of school qualifications and passion for the subject, he was accepted on to his course, and now has his sights firmly set on eventually becoming the manager of a large-scale dairy farm.