Boosted by a Southern Cross University scholarship, Dayna Scapin is helping farmers better understand crop health
Southern Cross University student Dayna Scapin is off to a flying start, combining her two passions – drones and agriculture – in a new business venture, thanks to the Student Opportunities Fund.
Dabbling first in an engineering degree, Dayna switched to the Bachelor of Science (Regenerative Agriculture) after taking six months off and realising she wanted to pursue a career in agriculture.
“I have always loved figuring out how things work and making things, which is why I had always wanted to do engineering but after completing a year of engineering, I had become very homesick, missing both my family and the connection I have to the rural community. During my time off, I worked on my family’s mango and avocado farm. It was then that I fell in love with drones and decided that I wanted a career where I could fly drones and use them in farming, instead of just building them,” said Dayna.
Developing a business where she could offer drone services to farmers – such as crop health monitoring and disease mapping data – was a natural next step and when Dayna heard about a scholarship to help students with start-up ideas, she applied. “I was so overwhelmed when I got the news that I had been granted a scholarship through the Student Opportunities Fund and I am beyond grateful! The scholarship will help me to cover the start-up costs of my drone business InnerVision Drones where I will put all my learning into practice and it means I can finish my studies without having to take on additional part-time jobs to cover these costs.”
Through the Student Opportunities Fund, Dayna was granted $7,500. “This scholarship has also given me even more motivation to keep doing what I’m doing and pushing through my last few months of studying with the end goal of assisting farmers in a better future of farming and understanding of their crops alongside my drone data and interpretation”.
“For those students who are currently thinking of applying for the Student Opportunities Fund scholarship, I say go for it! If you have a business, invention, proposal, start-up, or any type of opportunity – apply for this scholarship! The interview team were very clear about what this scholarship is for, it’s about assisting you in getting that idea to the world alongside your studies. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and give it a go, everything is a learning experience. The worst they can say is no, and no matter what the outcome is, you can say that you gave it a go, you got experience writing an application and doing an interview and it prepares you for the next time”.
Asked about her future, Dayna confirms that her short-term plans are to grow and develop her business. “I recently attended a local field day alongside the company I did my 10-week internship with and this has assisted me in building my network and connections with both farmers and industry, providing me with new clients and opportunities that I am excited to take on! I want to continue to learn, research and expand my knowledge in both the drone and agricultural industries”.
Learn more about Southern Cross Student Opportunities Fund.