Full circle

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.

It’s funny where we end up in life; how things come full circle somehow, even when we don’t plan for it.

I have always loved agriculture. As a small child, I vividly remember my dad having us muck out the stalls on my grandparents’ beef farm in Tavistock, Ontario.

Then, a serendipitous thing happened and my family found themselves moving to the tiny community of Inkerman, all the way over in Eastern Ontario. It was there we started a hobby farm with a horse, a cow, rabbits, chickens, turkeys, pheasants, ducks and various other types of fowl. I began attending the elementary school down the road.

Flash forward years later when I decided to attend Queen’s University to study Biology. I wanted to be a marine biologist; I was fascinated by aquatic creatures and habitats. While I was away at Queen’s, the elementary school I had attended as a child was closed and sold to a local company called Sevita International. During the summer between second and third year, I walked into Sevita and asked if they needed a student for the summer. As the saying goes, the rest is history.

Eight years later, I am working as the Research Coordinator for Sevita Genetics, the research branch of Sevita International. Marine biologist aspirations long forgotten - but still in my dreams - I now spend my days surrounded by soybeans in a very much land locked hamlet south of Ottawa.

I feel very lucky to have found a fantastic career and success in my hometown after thinking I had left my life in agriculture behind. However, the one thing in this process that I did miss was opportunity to experiment and learn about what other opportunities the agriculture industry had to offer. The Mentorship Program through the Ag Women’s Network was my way to reach out and make a connection to that fountain of information. At the very least, having the knowledge and experience of another successful woman to help guide me has made all the difference not only in my career but in my confidence as a woman working in agriculture. Through the support of the Ag Women’s Network and my fantastic mentor, Claire, I am ready to connect with others in this field and hope to someday pass on my own experience to the next generation of ag women.

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