We are delighted to announce that the 2020 Winner of the Dawn Fleming Student Scholarship is Rienna Pratten.
Rienna is currently working fulltime at the South Gippsland Shire Council in the Parks and Gardens department. She has a lot of different roles at the Council, including Tree and Turf maintenance, Landscaping and Playground upkeep.
Rienna has recently completed her Cert III in Parks and Gardens at the Chisholm Institute at Cranbourne and wishes to complete more study to better her career. Her plan is to start the Cert IV in Horticulture in the near future, to then complete a Diploma and many more small courses.
Once finishing high school, Rienna had no clear career path. She says she found herself lost in what line of work to go down but one thing she was clear about was her love of being outdoors and in nature. When a job at her local council was advertised in 2017 for an Apprenticeship in Parks and Gardens, she had found the career for her.
Whilst she is thoroughly enjoying her time and position at the South Gippsland Shire, Rienna says “she would love to end up not only more educated, but also in a more senior position such as team leader within the shire. In an industry that I hope will move well with the times, encouraging more women into the job and making more sustainable and productive gardens. I would love to be the mentor for many young adults and be the person who they look up to and come to for support in the industry.” Rienna says.
These aspirations were highlighted by Rienna’s lecturers who see her potential for not only being a mentor but also for as a future leader. “Rienna has shown her natural leadership qualities within the classroom, willing to help her peers and taking the lead when working in groups. In the role as a qualified gardener, she now is actively involved with the mentoring of new apprentices, both female and male with their studies and within their work environment.”
Rienna is very grateful to have received the Dawn Fleming Scholarship as well as the opportunity to be a part of such a wonderful association, it will go a long way in helping her achieve her career and horticulture goals.