The Gardiner Dairy Foundation continues to demonstrate its commitment to a long-term future for the dairy industry through its ongoing support of the Monash Industry Team Initiative (MITI) Program.

The MITI Program partners multi-disciplinary Monash University student teams with leading organisations, providing the dairy industry the benefit of having bright young minds exposed, to real world challenges and experience career opportunities in regional Victoria.

Gardiner Dairy Foundation CEO, Dr Clive Noble, said its support of the MITI Program has generated significant ongoing benefits for the Victorian dairy industry having funded more than 30 projects over four years.

“We identified an opportunity to get involved with MITI, which evolved from discussions with milk processors about the challenges of getting highly skilled young people to come and work in the industry, particularly in regional areas.

“The MITI Program has been a huge success, not only attracting students to employment opportunities within the dairy industry and the benefits of living in regional Victoria, but also giving dairy businesses an opportunity to work with dynamic multi- disciplinary teams, examining creative solutions to their business challenges,” said Clive.

Bega Executive Chairman, Barry Irvin AM, said it was great for the industry that Gardiner continues to support the MITI program consistently.

“The MITI Program is fantastic, it fosters the process of exchange by creating teams that get together and share ideas to generate positive outcomes. I get the chance to talk to young people about what the real challenges are, but also to think about what the world might look like in the future and what’s possible”, said Barry.

In 2017/18, Gardiner funded seven MITI teams, involving 26 students working across projects from December to February for organisations including Bega, Fonterra, Burra Foods, Parmalat, Warrnambool Cheese and Butter and the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR).

MITI Program Director, Madeleine McManus OAM, said it was fantastic to see the growth, interest and passion for the dairy industry from Monash students.

“By integrating dairy into the MITI Program, we’ve created a co-hort of expertise and a genuine interest from students in dairy, with alumni now even working and seeking employment in the dairy industry,” said Madeleine.

Monash University student, Levi Jackson, who is currently completing his fourth year of an Engineering and Commerce double degree, is looking forward to applying the knowledge, skills and practical experience he has gained from participating in this year’s MITI Program.

“One of the major advantages of the MITI Program is that we’re dealing with real challenges and we are given an opportunity to contribute to positive change and make an impact.

“Through the MITI Program, I found working in the dairy industry extremely rewarding and interesting, and I’ll certainly be seeking out employment opportunities in this industry in the future.

“I’d like to thank the Gardiner Dairy Foundation for its support to the MITI Program and its commitment to building connections between students and the dairy industry,” said Levi.

To find out more about the Monash Industry Team Initiative (MITI) Program, visit