Providing International Opportunities in Dairy

Opportunities to travel overseas can be hard to come by for farmers. Many are so busy on the farm that they never imagine leaving for an extended period of time. Programs offering international experiences were few and far for older generations. Now, there are more programs than ever before – especially for younger adults.

Global Cow is one such program. This program provides international opportunities for young adults in the dairy industry. The inspiration for the program came from Jill Stahl Tyler’s own international experiences and love for dairy. While growing up, her family hosted international visitors and workers. Stahl Tyler also spent time in South America after graduating from college.

“I went abroad and then kept thinking I want to combine cows and international,” said Stahl Tyler. She worked for the Holstein Association and the program began with them. When they closed, they suggested that she continue building the program. Global Cow has been operating in it’s current form for almost 30 years.

Since the program began in 1995, thousands have been impacted. From participants to host families, employers and anyone who has come into contact with international guests. That is the power of building these cross-cultural relationships says Stahl Tyler.

Most participants come to the United States to work on dairy farms. Typically, they live on the farms where they work and are paid for their work. There are far more individuals from other countries looking to come to the U.S. than Americans looking to go overseas. The countries where American’s usually go to are Australia, New Zealand, and several in South America including Argentina and Brazil.

Stahl Tyler believes that there is so much value to having an overseas experience. “I think it’s fun – not just important,” said Stahl Tyler. “It opens your eyes to how stuff goes in another country, how other people see you.”