Young Ag Professionals Forge Ahead

Image: Taylor Schaefer joins Mid-West Farm Report in-studio.

The extended pandemic impacts agriculture at the student level. UW-Madison senior Taylor Schaefer gives the Mid-West Farm Report a student-eye view of what agriculture involvement looks like during COVID-19.

Schaefer is involved in the Association of Women in Agriculture, Saddle and Sirloin and Badger Dairy Club. She also plays the trumpet in the University of Wisconsin Marching Band.

The Association of Women in Agriculture’s largest event is Breakfast on the Farm on campus. The association has offered in virtually during the pandemic, which Schaefer says allowed the organization to reach people beyond Madison with Wisconsin ag products and education materials.

Other key events had been canceled. Saddle and Sirloin canceled Badger Kick-Off Classic for the second year in a row due to lacking membership capacity, and the uncertainty regarding COVID-19 and the quickly changing regulations imposed by UW-Madison and Dane County.

Schaefer says she haven’t been able to source low organization involvement across her school clubs to one thing. She says she thinks it has to do with lack of engagement on campus. When school was virtual, would-be members stayed on their home farms. She adds her clubs are using this time to regroup and refresh what the organizations are all about.

Schaefer will be at World Dairy Expo every day of the international event for her role in various clubs. World Dairy Expo is Sept. 28 through Oct. 2. She says the excitement for this year’s show has been building between her and her peers since the 2020 show was canceled.