An exciting new programme is available for people working in horticulture to advance their careers and take on management roles.
The New Zealand Diploma in Horticulture Production is a Level 6 NZQA-accredited course available online and nationwide through Fruition Horticulture.
The fees-free two-year programme has been designed to develop the skills and knowledge of people employed in the industry so they can contribute at a senior technical or managerial level. Enrolments for the 2021 intake are being taken now.
Fruition Horticulture managing director Sandy Scarrow says the horticulture industry’s growth means businesses require more people in management and technical roles to lead their teams and support growers to become more successful in their orchards and vineyards.
“This programme is aimed at people who already have several years of industry experience and who are highly motivated to advance their careers and take advantage of management opportunities as they arise.
“We’re thrilled to be supporting working professionals fulfil their passion for horticulture by equipping them with the skills they’ll need to operate at a more senior level.”
Horticulture is New Zealand’s fourth largest export industry and is worth $7 billion to the economy. About 60 per cent of New Zealand’s total horticultural production is exported to more than 124 countries. Kiwifruit alone accounts for close to $2 billion in export earnings.
Participants in Fruition Horticulture’s Level 6 programme will focus on the specialist requirements for ‘process improvement’ for meeting domestic and international market requirements. The industry’s demand for innovative solutions means the course will also develop students’ ability to assess the merit of products or technologies so they can be introduced to a horticultural workplace.
The course will enable graduates to make informed strategic business decisions and the industry will benefit by having experienced technical specialists with the skills to optimise workplace efficiency and lift the competitive edge of their organisations.
Students are expected to remain employed during the university-level programme, with course content delivered online to fit around their work.
Fees will be covered under the Targeted Training and Apprenticeship Fund (TTAF) as horticulture is an industry where demand from employers is expected to grow during New Zealand’s recovery from the impacts of Covid-19. This funding provides an avenue for students wanting to upgrade their tertiary qualifications or transfer from other industries.
Fruition Horticulture is based in the Bay of Plenty and also operates offices in Hawke’s Bay and Nelson/Marlborough. It provides specialist consultancy, technical, research and training services to the horticultural industry.
This new programme adds to the suite of educational opportunities provided by its qualified and experienced teachers. It offers the Lincoln University Diploma in Horticulture (Level 5) to Bay of Plenty and Nelson students who gain their qualification while being able to stay in their place of work.
It partners with the Primary ITO to deliver courses for the Horticultural Apprenticeship programme and provide tuition for the New Zealand Certificate in Horticulture and Horticultural Production (Levels 3 to 4) to horticultural apprentices nationally.
Fruition also supports youth aged 16-19 who aren’t engaged in education or employment as part of its Level 2 He Tūranga a Mō te Mahi programme. With a focus on providing pastoral care and valuable work skills, more than 90 per cent of students go on to further study or are offered employment in horticulture.
Funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Fruition also delivers the Vakameasina programme to seasonal workers from Pacific countries during their stay in New Zealand. They learn literacy and numeracy skills as well as education about health, safety, budgeting and the New Zealand Road Code.
Sandy says the Level 6 programme demonstrated Fruition’s commitment to upskilling people who have a love for horticulture, wherever they are on their journey.
“We share their passion for horticulture and are here to support people throughout their career.”
Phone (07) 928 5350 or visit www.fruition.ac.nz to learn more about Fruition’s Level 6 programme.