Wagga Charles Sturt University student Forough Ataollahi’s passion for agriculture has taken her from a small farming village in Iran to an awards ceremony in Sydney.
The School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences PhD candidate has been named a higher education finalist for the state government’s StudyNSW International Student Awards later this month.
Mrs Ataollahi is in her final year for her degree and is writing a thesis on sheep mineral supplements.
“Our research shows that calcium and magnesium supplementation can improve the reproductive performance of ewes and improve lamb survivability,” she said.
“That will all give a benefit to farmers.”
Department of Industry Director Peter Mackey said the annual awards celebrated international students’ contributions to NSW society and reinforced the benefits of international education to the broader community.
StudyNSW awards panelists selected Mrs Ataollahi for her actions as a “passionate advocate and leader for international students at the local, state and national level” and “tireless in her service to newly arrived immigrants in the local community”.
“Outside university, Forough volunteers with several community organisations, including the St Vincent de Paul’s Resettlement Program and the Wagga Wagga City Library’s Language Café initiative,” panelists wrote.
“Forough also provides valued input at the Multicultural Council of Wagga Wagga’s informal Cultural Club meetings.”
Mrs Ataollahi said she planned to stay in Australia and had chosen CSU for its record of graduates going on to find employment and the agricultural expertise at the Wagga campus.
“I’m from a small village in Iran, which is located in the south of Iran is called Eshkour,” Mrs Ataollahi said.
“My parents still live there and are farmers, so I come from a farm family.”
Mrs Ataollahi has spent the past three years living in Wagga.
“I would like to continue my work in livestock, which is my passion,” she said.
The winners will be announced at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney on September 25.
“It’s exciting and I’m really looking forward to it,” Mrs Ataollahi said.
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