Ellen plans to further her studies overseas

At home in the nursery: Ellen Goodwin aims to turn her passion into a career.
At home in the nursery: Ellen Goodwin aims to turn her passion into a career.

Ellen Goodwin has her grandmother to thank for her love of gardening.

From a tender age Ellen has developed a passion for plants, one she now hopes to turn into a vocation.

The Richmond TAFE horticulture student is reaping the rewards for her passion, recently being named a recipient of a 2019 BBM Global Industry Scholarship.

The scholarships are awarded annually and aim to recognise excellence and vision in aspiring industry leaders across trades, agriculture, horticulture and the performing arts.

Ellen has completed the Certificate III in Production Nursery and is currently enrolled in the Certificate IV in Horticulture at TAFE NSW Richmond.

"I developed my passion for horticulture at an early age, thanks to my grandmother's love of gardening," Ellen said. "I believe in the transformative and healing power that gardening and the cultivation of plants has and have seen evidence of this in my own life.

"In the past three years I have realised young passionate people, especially females are lacking in this industry. Changing this trend is something that I believe I can influence as I aim to inspire other young women that horticulture is a creative and fulfilling career."

Ellen said she aimed to travel to Holland to research Dutch production systems.

"They're the leading innovators of automation in the world," she said.

"Their systems are highly efficient and therefore sustainable. Recycling water, low wastage, and solar passive heating systems are just a few things that I would like to further my knowledge on. I have only ever studied plants in the Australian climate and it would be interesting to compare and learn from other countries."

Ellen said she would also like to visit Japan as her work - with Oasis Horticulture at Yellow Rock - has a joint venture with Suntory genetics.

"It would be interesting to see how both sides of the market operate," she said. "Suntory has a strong sustainability and innovation focus. They believe in taking responsibility in sustainable business practices and promotion of environmental management. They are an expert in innovation by harnessing biotechnology and the expertise of employees.

"The breeding process takes place in Japan, where an extensive team of plant professionals works passionately on breeding the perfect plant for gardens and balconies worldwide. Japan is also home to beautiful oriental gardens and the famous cherry blossoms festival."

Ellen's scholarship was supported by Nursery & Garden Industry NSW & ACT.

It's general manager Ray Lee said: "It is opportunities such as this that are pivotal to ensuring we have the next generation of industry leaders to continue on in this amazing industry."