New Agrarian Voices

Learn about the impressions and experiences of each year's cohort of apprentices in their own words.

 

 

 

 

Olivia Fitzgerald, APPRENTICE, Indreland Ranch, Montana

REFLECTIONS AFTER THE FIRST MONTH
May 2022

Since I can remember, I’ve had a deep love and connection to animals and the outdoors. This love has been evolving ever since and has taken many forms. Some time around middle school I became interested in the environment and “saving the planet”. I started doing things like collecting cans to recycle and picking up trash along the roads. My love for the earth continued, guided primarily by nice looking instagrams and Netflix documentaries. This eventually led to me getting a degree in ecology and being vegetarian for a couple years. It wasn’t until I got a job with the BLM through the Montana Conservation Corps that I finally gained direction. During my time there I gained a new appreciation for the prairie and those who steward it. I attended range camp where I was immersed in new ideas about conservation through agriculture. It opened my eyes to the power of grazing as a tool for conservation and building soil health. 

Since then, it feels like I’m slowly putting pieces of a puzzle together. So far, the pieces I’ve got together paint a picture of connection. Man kind has a role in the ecosystem; a notch carved out that only we fit in where we can live with Mother Nature, rather than trying to separate ourselves. Rekindling this connection through regenerative ag has the potential not only to heal our ecosystems, but to heal people physically, mentally, and spiritually. 

While I have not found exactly what I want to do for a career, I know I want to work in regenerative ag to educate and connect people with nature. Understanding  the point of view of the producer is such a critical piece in the puzzle. I want to know what it takes to make it happen; all the ups and downs. Having this understanding will help me to connect the consumer back to agriculture and our planet.

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