Leah Crisp was brought up in the city, but always knew she was a country girl at heart.

With a career goal of becoming a dairy farmer, Leah joined her TeenAg Club at Palmerston North Girls' High School and before long became the vice-chair.

During the school holiday the 14 year old was one of 18 Manawatu students selected to develop new skills on a TeenAg leadership course.

"I always thought I was a country girl at heart from the time spent at my uncle's farm and my grandparent's lifestyle property," shesaid.


"I couldn't imagine myself in the city now."

The leadership course, called Raising the Standards, was a three-day programme based in Feilding and run by NZ Young Farmers. It was designed to enhance the skills of emerging leaders within TeenAg clubs.

Leah said she left the course feeling inspired after hearing from Hamish Best, who was runner-up at last year's FMG Young Farmer of the Year Grand Final in Feilding.

"He told us to dress for the job you want tomorrow, not the one you have today," said Leah.

"Attending the course was such a rewarding experience.

"I learned a lot of new things ... about teamwork, communication and dealing with conflict ... which I can take back to my TeenAg club."

Leah said that during the course they did goal setting.

Leah looks towards a future in which she hopes to study farming through university or at a hands-on training course.

"Or just like my grandad, I could just pick it up," she said.

"But I think I'll get a degree."

The course wrapped up last Wednesday and is the second of three planned across New Zealand this year.

TeenAg clubs are part of the work being done by NZ Young Farmers to attract students into the agri-food sector.