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Stackyard News Feb 06

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Guild of Agricultural Journalists’ John Deere training award

John Deere Training Award courses

The Guild of Agricultural Journalists and John Deere Limited have announced the dates of this year’s week long training course for potential agricultural and horticultural journalists - Sunday April 9 to Tuesday April 11, 2006, with further dates to be confirmed for work experience placements.

Now in its 14th year, the course is designed to support one of the principal aims of the Guild of Agricultural Journalists - that of promoting schemes for the provision of suitable entrants into agricultural and horticultural journalism.

Many of today’s journalists and PR executives working in the land-based industries received an early boost to their careers from winning a place on previous John Deere Training Award courses. Several are currently employed on established journals such as Arable Farming, Farm Business, Farmers Guardian, Farmers Weekly, The Groundsman and profi international.

Andrew Faulkner, who attended the course in 1992 and is now editor-in-chief of the monthly specialist machinery magazine profi international, says:

“The Guild of Agricultural Journalists’ John Deere training award provides a good introduction to the basic skills required to become a technical journalist. In addition, the opportunity to gain experience and personal contacts, while on placement with a specialist magazine, is a valuable start to anyone’s career.”

The John Deere Training Award is aimed at students keen to work in the agricultural and horticultural media, and at journalists or public relations staff who have less than 12 months practical work experience.

There are 10 places available on the course, which is in two parts. The first two days, at John Deere’s headquarters in Langar, Nottingham, involve lectures by experienced Guild members and training consultants, and practical exercises that cover the main media sectors.

The final three days see each of the selected course members given practical work experience at one of a range of specialist magazines, newspapers or PR consultancies across the UK.

At the end of the course, each person has to write a news story based on a press briefing given at the end of the two days of lectures. A judging panel awards a £250 cheque and the handsome John Deere trophy to the winner, with the presentation taking place at the Guild’s Royal Show reception in July.

The course is completely free of charge, although successful applicants will be expected to cover their own out of pocket expenses. For further details please contact Steve Mitchell.

The photograph shows last year’s GAJ/John Deere Training Award participants at the traditional end of course ‘ride and drive’ session.

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John Deere
John Deere