More than $135,000 of scholarship funding currently available for women working in the horticulture sector

Australian Gender Equality Council launches

Women & Leadership Australia (WLA)  and Hort Innovation is pleased to announce that more than $135,000 worth of is currently available for women to participate in a range of leadership development programs.

Data released by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency this year found that the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery industry in Australia had one of the highest gender pay gaps of all industries.

With this in mind, we are pleased to share that we are going into the second year of our partnership with Hort Innovation with an even bigger pool of funding available and an extra course available to female emerging, mid-level and senior leaders in the horticulture industry.

In the first year of the program a total of 14 women who work in the horticulture industry were given scholarships to undertake leadership programs. 11 of them have already completed their courses and the other three are well on their way.

Mardee Cassin, who was one of the recipients in the first round, said of the program: “As a young woman in the Australian horticulture industry I applied to the Accelerated Leadership Performance Program to gain practical tools to equip me as I develop myself in my professional career.

“Participating in the program provided me with exactly that. I am now more confident in communicating and working with a broad range of people both within my current workplace and beyond”  

Hort Innovation CEO, Matt Brand said the gender disparity within the agriculture industry was well recognised, and Hort Innovation was proudly supporting a new era of gender equality and integration across horticulture through strategic levy investment.

“In recent years we have invested heavily in leadership projects encouraging women to take the lead by working with partnering organisations to offer tailored programs designed to build skills and provide leadership training and opportunities,” he said.

“Through the Hort Frontiers Leadership Fund, we have already had 12 women undertake the Masterclass in Horticultural Business training, with five graduations in the last round.”

Suzi Finkelstein, Program Director at WLA, said that she was thrilled to be partnering with Hort Innovation to provide women in horticulture with grants and access to leadership training.

“Studies show that the more women you have in leadership roles in workplaces and industries, the lower the gender pay gap is for that workforce. Even though this developmental program is only in its second year, I know that we are making a positive and tangible difference in the sector. I hear success stories and tales of positive outcomes regularly from past participants.”

Go to for more information and to register your interest. Expressions of interest close December 7th.

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