Two students from Southland Girls’ High School have been selected for the trip of a lifetime to the United States.
Sarah Humphries, 17, and Kayla Calder, 16, have been chosen to attend the 4-H Congress in Bozeman, Montana in July.
They’re among six TeenAg members from across New Zealand picked to take part in the sought-after exchange.
“I’m really excited and a bit shocked. It’s going to be such an amazing opportunity,” said Sarah.
Her parents have a 570-hectare farm at Five Rivers, which runs sheep and grazes dairy heifers.
“The United States has large ranches and feedlots and I can’t wait to learn more about their style of farming,” she said.
Students will stay with host families and explore Yellowstone National Park as part of the three-week exchange.
“A highlight will be spending four days attending the 4-H Congress,” said Bridget Huddleston from NZ Young Farmers, who will chaperone the students.
“The girls will participate in educational workshops, hear from professional speakers and mingle with 400 other delegates. It will be an amazing opportunity.”
Tyla Bishop, 17, from St Kevin’s College in Oamaru hopes the trip will help broaden her understanding of global food production.
“Being selected was a big surprise,” said the Year 13 student who lives on a 700-cow dairy farm in the Waitaki Valley.
“I’ve never been to Montana, so I’m really looking forward to the experience.”
Tyla has spent the summer holidays working on another dairy farm to help pay for the trip.
The three other students taking part are Olivia Mackenzie from Ashburton, Rhiannon Simpson from Timaru, and Mikayla McClennan from Te Awamutu.
It’s hoped the inaugural exchange will become a biennial event.
Sarah, Tyla and Kayla have all completed the Leadership Pathway Programme (LPP), which is a unique leadership course run by NZ Young Farmers and funded by the Red Meat Profit Partnership (RMPP).
It’s been developed to identify emerging leaders and ensure they’re entering career pathways in the primary industries.
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