WYSO

Agriculture

Lucy Enge and Kayla Wise
Renee Wilde / WYSO

Before the coronavirus pandemic, County Lines producer Renee Wilde met with faculty and students at Wilmington College in Clinton County and heard their ideas about rural life and the prospects for a career in agriculture.

Clubs like FFA, which stands for Future Farmers of America, serve as both social and educational roles in rural communities. Kayla Wise credits FFA for her decision to pursue an agricultural degree. Kayla also never believed in climate change until she took a class at Wilmington College called Individual and Global Policy.

Corey Cockerill teaches Agricultural Communications. She was interviewed by student Aryn Copeland about the journey from the suburbs to rural life.
Renee Wilde / WYSO

Before the coronavirus pandemic, County Lines producer Renee Wilde met with faculty and students at Wilmington College in Clinton County and heard their ideas about rural life and the prospects for a career in agriculture.

Lucy Enge and Kayla Wise
Renee Wilde / WYSO

Before the coronavirus pandemic, County Lines producer Renee Wilde met with faculty and students at Wilmington College in Clinton County and heard their ideas about rural life and the prospects for a career in agriculture.

Corey Cockerill teaches Agricultural Communication at Wilmington College, with her student Lucy Enge.
Renee Wilde / WYSO

Before the coronavirus pandemic, County Lines producer Renee Wilde met with faculty and students at Wilmington College in Clinton County and heard their ideas about rural life and the prospects for a career in agriculture.

Wilmington College is a Quaker College founded on the tenets of the Quaker religion -  simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality and stewardship.

Ohio is among the top states for several agricultural crops and for food production and processing. But while farming is considered an essential business under the various shutdown orders, it's a tough time for those who run the state's 76,000 farms.

Morgan McFarland, Grace Smith and Carly Fitz are freshman "aggies" at Wilmington College.
Renee Wilde / WYSO

Two months ago, before the coronavirus pandemic hit Ohio, County Lines producer Renee Wilde met with faculty and students at Wilmington College in Clinton County and heard their ideas about rural life and the prospects for a career in agriculture.

Agriculture is the largest major for Wilmington students, and surprisingly those AG students are predominantly female.

Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) encouraged a large group of farmers to keep participating in the state's water quality program, saying his administration is keeping its eye on a specific indicator to determine if their plan is reducing harmful algal blooms.

Renee Wilde / WYSO

Laura Lengnick, soil scientist and the author of Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems For A Changing Climate, says that climate change isn’t a calling out - it’s a calling in for all of us to pull together. 

Weather and tariffs have created some tough conditions for Ohio farmers and agribusinesses. But they can get some relief through a state program that reduces the interest on the debt they incur for their operations. 

Along with learning how to collect and save seeds, part of Beth Bridgman's class included collecting the oral history of seeds.
courtesy of Beth Bridgeman

78 percent of the world’s seeds are now owned by three companies, and it’s those companies who decide which ones to make available to the public. 

That’s quite a turnaround from America’s early years, when the U.S. government was giving billions of seeds away for free. But it’s not just the variety of seeds being lost, it’s also the history that those seeds represent. 

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