I wanted to take this opportunity to express my gratitude for the Targeting Excellence Scholarship that was awarded to me. I am deeply honored and humbled by your generosity towards the younger generation. I plan to use the monetary gift to further my education to promote the values with which I was raised, and you also share. I am honored to receive this gift to further my education in the dairy industry to help modernize our farms to make a better future. My future plans after graduating South Dakota State University in May 2021 is first to see what job opportunities come my way and then looking in to graduate school to receive my Masters in Ruminant Nutrition as I have developed a passion for research throughout my time at South Dakota State University. Then, I will pair my passions for nutrition and research to work alongside dairy farmers as a feed consultant to help them maximize their output with their lowest input cost. I am privileged to know that there are people out there, like you, who want to help me succeed.
My dairy journey started from day one, taking my first steps in the barn. As I began to walk, I started helping my parents and siblings on the farm, first feeding calves and then working my way up to other jobs. When I turned four, I was able to show my first calf at the fair. After this, I knew helping my family on the farm was just what I wanted to do. Throughout high school, I served as one of the family farm hands at my home farm, Lubben Dairy. Through this position, I assisted with calf health and treatment, monitoring treatment records, milking and helping with other necessary tasks on the farm. Alongside my work at the farm, I was a Certified Nursing Assistant at my local nursing home. After working at the nursing home, my passion for the dairy community grew more, and I knew my career decisions were in the dairy community. Now, as a junior pursuing a degree in dairy production, I continue to live my passion each and every day. I chose my major because I want to have the change to influence the agricultural community. As a young female who grew up in agriculture, I have found it difficult to watch generations of family’s distance themselves from agriculture and become ignorant in the field. I feel as though it is my responsibility to converse with people about the unique lifestyle of an agriculturalist. Because of this, I decided to attend South Dakota State University because of the many opportunities and networking that I have obtained throughout the years. Some of these opportunities that I have acquired is being a South Dakota Dairy Ambassador. Not only am I able to advocate for the dairy community, but I am also able to perfect the communication abilities that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Furthermore, I was able to be 1 of the 30 students to study abroad in New Zealand this past May. Through this experience, I was able to learn the different ways of beef, sheep, dairy, vegetable, and fruit farming. Through my education, SDSU has given me the opportunity to be a research assistant where I monitor calf performance post-calving after supplementing yeast products into transition cow diets. Throughout my professional and internship experiences, I am eager to hopefully further my education and receive my M.S. degree in Ruminant Nutrition. I believe that through furthering my education, I will be able to give back to our motivated and hardworking farmers to the best of my ability as I stand alongside them as a Dairy Nutritionist.