CORRIGIN Farm Improvement Group (CFIG) executive officer Veronika Crouch has been nominated as a Rural Ambassador for the Corrigin Agricultural Society.
The 29-year-old has spent the past five years living in Corrigin after growing up on her family farm at Badgingarra and later at Harrismith.
Ms Crouch boarded at St Mary's Anglican Girls School where she graduated in 2007 with a list of achievements, including being house sports captain and recognition for academic excellence.
"Boarding was a highlight for me as it provided many opportunities that were otherwise not accessible in my small rural town," Ms Crouch said.
She studied at the University of Western Australia and graduated with a science degree in 2012.
After working for two years with other grower groups, in 2015 Ms Crouch settled into CFIG and in 2018 she completed a Diploma of Project Management course from North Metropolitan TAFE.
She has been CFIG's executive officer for five years, where she has successfully developed, managed and implemented numerous research and extension projects.
Ms Crouch is managing more than 20 projects for the 2019 season, as well as running multiple events and field walks in the region.
These projects range from cropping, pastures and livestock with focusses on soil amelioration, amendments, rotations, seeding systems, grazing crops, and fodder strategies for weaning lambs.
"Working for the Corrigin Farm Improvement Group has given me a unique opportunity to work within the agricultural industry and directly with growers to try and better local and regional businesses and communities," she said.
This year Ms Crouch represented CFIG at the Locate19 conference in Melbourne, Victoria, where she discussed project results and grower perspectives on utilising Satellite-Based Augmentation System and Global Navigation Satellite System technologies.
She said given the level of technology being adopted in agriculture, she expected to see a change in the workforce and the skills required for current farm systems.
"This includes technicians, IT and device specialists - especially with the introduction of autonomous vehicles, more sensor technologies and UAVs etc," Ms Crouch said.
"It would be ideal to see these skilled individuals having a desire to live and work in rural communities and choosing to relocate to the country.
"It would also be desirable for many young people to have opportunities within a range of occupations which allow them to return to the country to pursue their career, whether it be as a grower or agribusiness professional."
Ms Crouch wants to see better education and communication of agriculture, farmers and farming practices.
"It would be fantastic to see support for the industry and the people who live and work in rural and remote communities," she said.
Farming has always been on Ms Crouch's radar and she regularly returns to the family farm where her parents Robyn and Bevin, along with brother Luke, run the business.
She even has ambitions of owning and operating her own property in the Wheatbelt one day.
In the meantime she is looking forward to representing Corrigin as the 2019 Rural Ambassador.
The Rural Ambassador Competition puts the spotlight on young rural adults who have a passion for living and working in rural communities.
The national competition aims to discover the next generation of rural leaders who have the desire to represent and promote their community, their region and their State.
"The winner of the regional area progresses to represent at the State competition and the winner of that goes to represent WA in the national competition, which is being held in Perth this year," Ms Crouch said.
The ambassador program is for people in agriculture under the age of 30 and promotes younger people in agriculture.
Ms Crouch said it's a good opportunity to advocate for agriculture.
"Each applicant has a topic to talk about," she said.
"It might be something that they are passionate about or something they would like to see happen in the industry.
"And there is plenty to talk about in agriculture."