22 May 2017
Helen Brown, a final year BSc (Hons) Agriculture student, won the Agrovista Award for outstanding placement performance. Helen worked for Hutchinsons, one of the UK’s largest providers of agronomy and other specialist farm services.
Placement Manager Terry Pickthall outlined her achievements at the placement awards event.
"She secured the placement herself by impressing the company with her initiative - an excellent achievement in itself as the business did not usually employ placement students.
"Her role was broad and allowed her to experience a number of different parts of the business all over the UK. This included setting up and running customer visit days at 13 different national trial sites, setting up a maize trial in her native Cumbria and spending several weeks in the laboratories of Richard Austin Agriculture, trying her hand at nematode testing and analysis along with soil, compost and nutrients.
"She also had the opportunity to visit Barenbrug seeds in Holland, looking at their grass seed factory and trials and learning about plant breeding, which she found fascinating. A common thread through all these tasks were excellent performance and the ability to deliver a diverse range of projects to tight timescales. She also completed an excellent project on black grass control in spring barley by variation of seed rate.
"Her overall performance on placement was exceptional and resulted in Helen being offered a position on Hutchinson’s prestigious graduate training scheme, where she hopes to apply her passion for crop science and interest in grassland to assist livestock farmers in her home county of Cumbria."