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TAFE NSW Padstow student Kristine Radford has proved that an ATAR is not the only way to your dream career. After leaving high school before year 12, Kristine enrolled in a Certificate III in Horticulture and has secured a job as a horticulturist at Impressions Landscape.
Kristine is entering the horticulture industry at the right time, as Australians bought more plants than ever last year, spending $2.6 billion on more than 2 billion plants.1
People staying at home in 2020 during the first wave of COVID-19 restrictions accounted for a significant portion of growth, with indoor plant sales rising nine per cent.
Kristine said her passion for caring for plants at home led her to pursue a career in horticulture.
“Plants have always been there for me as a hobby of mine, so when contemplating my career choices all of my friends encouraged me to choose something that would make me happy,” Kristine said.
“The Certificate III in Horticulture allowed me to gain more knowledge and skills that I could bring to the workplace, such as laying new lawns, propagating plants, hedging, testing soils and identifying plants.
“I’ve enjoyed getting hands-on experience at TAFE NSW Padstow. The whole campus is like a garden and has its own greenhouse and nursery for us to maintain while we learn.”
TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Horticulture Tony Momi said home growing organic produce, beautifying outdoor spaces, and contributing to the environment is driving the growth of the horticulture industry.
“Some people see horticulture as an activity for the older generation, but that perception is changing. COVID-19 and environment concerns have changed the way many people value and interact with green life in their lives,” Mr Momi said.
“Students studying horticulture at TAFE NSW learn everything from plant biology and knowledge, soil improvement and landscape maintenance which allows them to develop the skills and knowledge required in the workforce.”
TAFE NSW Padstow’s Nursery and Horticulture students will open the on-site nursery to the public from June 21 - 24 for their biannual plant sale. The campus is located at Raine Road Padstow.
The four-day sale features a range of plants including natives, herb bowls, indoor plants and succulents at cost-effective prices, that the students have propagated and grown themselves as part of their studies. All proceeds raised will go towards purchasing more resources for the students.
For more information about studying horticulture at TAFE NSW visit www.tafensw.edu.au or phone 131 601
Media contact: Kellie Dillon, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist, firstname.lastname@example.org, 0408 006 866.