New Agrarian Voices

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





Ryan Koch, APPRENTICE, Barthelmess Ranch

April 2023

My journey into the agriculture field is not one that I would have expected for myself, but it has been a great adventure so far and I look forward to continuing to develop my skills to succeed in the field. I did not grow up in an agricultural family and that had never been my plan for my life. During college and while completing my degree I took a job at a local farm near my home in Maryland. During this time, I found that I had found something that I loved to do, and it was something I had never thought I would be doing. This work led me to working at a butcher shop and solidifying my decision to pursue a career in the agricultural field. There is something meaningful in providing food on people’s plates with hard work and care given to the animals that provide such an important nutrient to us. I knew that working with the land instead of against it was also important to me and that led me to this wonderful opportunity and apprenticeship. I look forward to the opportunity to learn from my mentors and their years of experience and what it takes to run a ranch and provide adequate land stewardship in a career where you have to constantly change what you thought worked and look for new solutions to issues all while dealing with factors out of your control. At the end of the day, I hope to grow my skillsets as a young person in the agriculture field and transfer the lessons I’ve learned to grow as person as well.

More Voices