Exploring future careers through mentorship

With the recent wrap-up of the Ag Women’s Network Pilot Mentorship Program, it’s time to share the blog posts created by the mentees. By following along with this series of posts you will get to know these women and find out about their mentorship experience. There are several common themes expressed from individual perspectives and lots of inspiring comments on mentorship. Many thanks to the mentees for accepting the challenge of writing a blog post and sharing their experiences.

Hi my name is Madison Cherwoniak! I am a mentee with the Ag Women's Network mentorship pilot year program. My mentor was Meaghan Ryersee and she was definitely one of the best mentors one could ask for.

I had the opportunity to surround myself with a group of fantastic people. Meaghan took me on mini field trips to learn more about different career opportunities in agriculture. Meaghan and I went to Holstein Canada, DHI, the Ag Scape annual general meeting and we spoke to a former AI technician. All these meetings provided the opportunity to network with many individuals and get insight for my own future in agriculture. Wherever my career path leads me, whether it's hands on at a farm or a corporate job, I know it will be connected to the agricultural industry.

In the back of my mind I have often thought genetics were fascinating. The Ag Women’s Network Mentorship Program helped me become more aware of career options in the field of genetics, whether it was with animals or plants. Because of my interest in cattle genetics Meaghan introduced me to a former AI technician, Tim de Groot. I had the chance to ask any questions I had about being in that field. Tim introduced me to a site called CDN.ca, which is now one of my favourite sites. You will often see me cruising on the internet looking at bulls and cows traits, as well as picking and choosing the best dam and sire to create that “perfect cow”. My current goal is to one day open my own business and focus on selling genetics in either the beef industry or dairy industry. The

mentorship program helped me clarify some ideas I had for my future goal job. Ag Women’s Network helped inspire me to follow my passion even though some people haven't been as supportive in my career choices because I am a petite female and do not have a family history in agriculture.

If you have the chance to be in the Ag Women’s Network Mentorship program I would highly suggest it. The opportunities from the program opened my eyes to possible careers in the agriculture industry that I didn't know existed. Thank you Ag Women’s Network for giving me this once in a lifetime opportunity!

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