Research scholarships on offer to grain growers

Author: | Date: 27 Jun 2011

Craig Duffield

Research scholarships on offer to grain growers

An opportunity to develop industry knowledge, skills and professional networks is being offered to southern region grain growers through the Nuffield Australia Farming Scholars program with the support of the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC).

The GRDC is supporting a total of five Nuffield Scholarships for 2012, including at least one for a grower from the southern region, which comprises southern New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.

In addition to the three GRDC southern, western and northern region-based scholarships that are made available each year, two new GRDC-supported scholarships are being offered for 2012.

These new scholarships are not restricted to any particular GRDC region, but must meet the standard Nuffield selection criteria.

GRDC southern regional panel chair David Shannon said the agricultural research scholarships provided the successful applicants with a rewarding opportunity to travel and study overseas and to join a unique worldwide agricultural network.

“Any growers wanting to extend their practical farming knowledge and management skills and techniques are encouraged to apply,” said Mr Shannon, who was awarded a Nuffield Scholarship in 1986 to study grain legume production.

The 2011 GRDC-sponsored southern region Nuffield Scholar, Craig Duffield, shares those sentiments: “The program offers a chance to broaden your horizons, to get out of your own patch and to see first-hand what is going on in the rest of the world,” Mr Duffield said.

“One of the greatest rewards that will come from this scholarship is my place in the Nuffield family – I will have 1100 people around the world that I can call on at any time if I need information, answers, directions or support.”

A wheat grower at Ramco in South Australia, Mr Duffield is using his scholarship to study the future of the family farm in marginal areas.

He participated in a seven-week global farm tour earlier this year and will soon be preparing for his 10-week individual study tour to the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom – once seeding is completed.

“It has been a fantastic experience so far and I’m looking forward to my upcoming travels and the knowledge and insights they will bring,” Mr Duffield said.

“I urge other grain growers who are passionate about their industry and yearn to learn more to consider applying for a scholarship.

“It took me a few years of contemplation to get around to applying, but I’m now glad I finally did. And I’m grateful for GRDC’s support of the program – it provides growers like me with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will have an impact for the rest of my life.”

Applications for the 2012 scholarships close on June 30, 2011. Further details and application forms are available via, by emailing or by phoning (03) 5480 0755.


Caption: A wheat grower at Ramco in South Australia, Craig Duffield is using his scholarship to study the future of the family farm in marginal areas.

• For more information about the scholarship program, contact Nuffield Australia CEO Jim Geltch on (03) 5480 0755.


• GRDC project code: NUF00009

• This media release and other media products are available via

GRDC Project Code NUF00009