SPRING BRINGS NEW UNDERSTANDING OF AGRICULTURE INDUSTRY FOR NONFARM IOWA STATE STUDENTS
AMES, Iowa -- Spring is a new and exciting time on a farm; corn seedlings coming up out of the brown soil and new calves playing in the pastures. Spring also has been an exciting time for 13 Iowa State College of Agriculture students as they ventured to Iowa farms for the first time April 7-9.
Emily Eggleston and Jeremiah Weigelt pose with farm machinery during their western Iowa tours.
During the second annual Agricultural Weekend Experience (AWE) students from a variety of College of Agriculture majors who have limited or no farm background had the opportunity to experience many facets of the agricultural industry.
Half of the students spent April 8 and 9 with farm family hosts in the northern Iowa communities of Osage, Nashua and Shell Rock. The other half traveled to Crawford County April 7, 8 and 9 to stay with farm families in Vail, Westside and Denison.
The students toured ethanol facilities in Mason City and Denison respectively. The weekend also included the tours of dairy operations, hog confinements, a visit to a local auction barn and visits with local agricultural professionals. Each student spent time asking questions of their hosts about how the agricultural industry today relates to their classroom learning.
It opened my eyes to what farmers struggle with everyday, be it the market, the weather or regular day-to-day activities, said Portia Allen, senior in animal science from Pocahontas. I learned a lot about how the market functions and how new technologies are impacting agriculture. I definitely feel more qualified to have a major in the College of Agriculture.
The event offered the students a chance to visual the agricultural industry from start to finish.
I learned so much on this trip about agriculture, said Phil Schalz, junior in ag business from Sugar Grove, Ill. From the farm to the packaged product in the grocery store, I have a newer, truer sense of agriculture and all the hard work that is put into farming in every way, shape and form.
Founded in 1937, the Iowa State University Agricultural Endowment provides opportunities for the College of Agriculture to support the people and infrastructure vital to the future of Iowa agriculture. The ISU Agriculture Endowment provides scholarships to Iowa State students; support for student activities and internships; grants for ISU research and demonstration projects; and support for other College of Agriculture programs that advance agriculture in Iowa.