Palmerston North TeenAg student beats almost 50 others to land coveted cadetship

Posted by on 17 September 2019 | Comments

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A determined Palmerston North student has achieved a long-held goal of landing a cadetship in the food and fibre sector.

Alex Argyle, 16, is one of only three people accepted for next year’s cadet intake at Pukemiro Station in Dannevirke.

Almost 50 people applied for the coveted two-year cadetships.

“I’m over the moon. I’m quite young for my year at school, so initially it came as a bit of a shock when I found out,” said Alex.

“This cadetship is tailor-made for young fellas like me. I’m quite a hands-on, practical sort of person.”

Pukemiro Station is a sprawling 930 hectare (effective) sheep and beef property, which is a mix of rolling hills and flats.

Cadets are trained in animal husbandry, stockmanship, fencing, feed management and budgeting, and the use of farm technology.

“You gain qualifications and practical skills, which will be extremely beneficial when I apply for my first full-time job,” said the Year 12 student.

Alex is one of two students from Palmerston North Boys’ High School who have secured spots at Pukemiro Station.

James Waterson, 18, has also been accepted.

Alex’s family farm beef cattle and deer at Tokomaru.

He decided he wanted to undertake a cadetship several years ago and has been busy preparing for the opportunity.

“I’ve spent the past three years relief milking on a neighbouring dairy farm. I’ve also been doing work experience on a sheep and beef farm at Parapara, south of Raetihi,” he said.

Applicants have to submit a curriculum vitae and do an interview as part of the application process.

“The interview was a lot less daunting than I expected it would be. The panel was really friendly. It was more of a conversation than an interview,” he said.

“I did several practice interviews with teachers at school to help me prepare.”

Alex and James both spend each Tuesday at a PrimaryITO Trades Academy, completing practical work and unit standards focused on sheep, beef and dairying.

“I think that training was quite beneficial to my application,” said Alex.

Pukemiro Station is owned by the ADB Williams Trust and has focused on training young agricultural sheep and beef students since 2014.

It became a cadet training farm in January 2018.