The Raw Truth About Agriculture

When you hear the word “agriculture”, what words or images play in your mind? Perhaps you see an image of a combine plowing through a field. Maybe you think about the acres and acres of corn you see on your drive home. Maybe you think about cowboys, “southern accents”, that one Luke Bryan song, or that one person in your class who always came to school with mud on their boots. These ideas are small fractions of rural agriculture in the modern world.

When I tell people I’m an agriculture major, I usually get a lot of replies backed with stereotypes and assumptions. Most people ask me if I grew up on a farm or if I’m from a “farm town”.  Although I did grow up in rural southern Ohio, I never considered a career in agriculture until a scholarship opportunity nearly fell into my lap my senior year of high school. I was desperate and driven to burst through every open door that would lead me to my dream school- Ohio State. Little did I know that this opportunity would change my life entirely.

Most people transition to college “knowing” what they want to study or exploring the freedom that comes with choosing your major. My agriculture scholarship had restrictions so I was indefinitely locked into the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences.  I was scared out of my mind and worried that I wouldn’t enjoy my classes or that I wouldn’t connect with any of my peers. To my surprise, I found a great need in the ag industry that I actually saw myself fulfilling- communication.

I would be lying if I told you that I perfectly molded to my peers. We had some similarities with our involvement in 4-H, but my projects consisted of cooking and scrapbooking, not livestock. Our families both worked with natural resources but my father worked in the lumber industry, not the agricultural industry. My school did not have an FFA program I could be involved in (until my senior year), I was not a 4-H camp counselor, nor did I grow up on a farm. Despite these contrasts that make me feel somehow less experienced, I have come to understand the advantages I have in communicating and analyzing my perspective and other’s perspectives of the ag industry.

I have realized that I do not fit into this perfect, square mold. I cannot morph comfortably into a box shape that confines my opportunities and achievements. But one year later and here I still stand, ready to shatter the glass ceiling that traps the future into oblivion about the raw truth of agriculture. I have found that I am most passionate about breaking the stereotype in a way that inspires other young people to pursue a career in agriculture. I  am passionate about my role as a young women in agriculture. And because I am passionate, I am now confident that agriculture is for me.

University Motto: Education for Citizenship

Happy April! Finals are at the end of the month and summer is nearly upon us, and I hope you take a look back at the fond memories you made and the experiences you shared during your first year at Ohio State. Things that come to mind probably include Welcome Week activities, athletic events, spending time with friends, and the occasional trip into the city of Columbus. You’ve learned the words to Carmen Ohio, the quickest way to get to each class, which foods are best used to fill up a meal plan block, and almost everything there is to know about Ohio State. However, I’m willing to bet you won’t recognize the following words:

Disciplina in civitatem

Will Ferrell Gif

Those Latin words are the university motto, which can be found inscribed on the Ohio State seal.

SealSeal 3

Seals: Cases A and B

In English, it reads as “Education for Citizenship”. Now, I don’t know about you, but I didn’t know that universities had mottoes. The ones that do range from “Gladly we Learn and Teach” at Illinois State University to “To Persevere and Excel” at New York University.

Maybe I’m biased, but I think that our motto knocks all the other mottoes out of the park. What’s different about Ohio State’s motto is that it calls upon us to be leaders; it calls upon us to use what we have learned here in our four years to change the world. As Ohio State students, and one day graduates, we are bound by duty to use what we learned here to be model citizens, and to make everywhere we go a better place than it was when we first arrived.

Now before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s focus on small achievements, little things that we can do incrementally to live out the university motto, “Education for Citizenship”.


Here’s looking at you, William Oxley Thompson

1. Volunteer

One of the best things about Ohio State is that there are dozens of ways for you to volunteer and give back to the community. In fact, if you take a casual walk through a residence hall, you will probably see posters advertising future events for organizations such as Circle K, Pay it Forward, and Buck-I-Serv. And who can forget Community Commitment and the MLK Day of Service, which happen on the same day EVERY YEAR? Other opportunities can be found easily online through a website dedicated to service such as

2. Be a Positive Influence, Be a Mentor

With standards rising for each and every incoming freshman class, the students of Ohio State are now some of the brightest and well-regarded students in the nation. With this success comes responsibility. So whether it’s a family member, a friend, or an acquaintance you barely know, chances are that someone in your life looks up to you and recognizes you as a person they want to model themselves after. If you recognize someone that needs a little help in any aspect of their life, take a minute or two to talk with them. Help them along their path just like someone has probably helped you along yours. The influence we have on our peers is astounding; take advantage of that fact to make a positive impact.

3. Make your voice heard! Vote!

The fact of the matter is that young people tend not to vote, as they usually don’t think that their vote will really matter. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth! We are fortunate to experience democracy at all levels at Ohio State, and students are asked to make their voices heard on a number of local, state, and national issues on a regular basis. Voting is one of the easiest ways for you to turn your beliefs into action. Whether it’s the yearly election for Undergraduate Student Government or the presidential election every four, take time out of your schedule to learn about the issues and then go and vote!