Learning outside of the classroom leads to industry connection
A University of Manitoba student has partnered with Manitoba Beef & Forages Initiatives (MBFI) in a unique learning opportunity that brings together academic learning and industry experience.
Mikayla Rouire, second year Diploma in Agriculture student, utilized a special project course offering in the School of Agriculture to create her own project with MBFI last fall. Over the past year, she interacted with industry members, attended a producer event, developed communications materials and organized an on-campus information booth.
Manitoba Beef & Forage Initiatives is a Brandon-based collaborative effort between Manitoba Agriculture, the Manitoba Beef Producers, Ducks Unlimited Canada and the Manitoba Forage & Grassland Association, with input and leadership from producers, academia and other industry stakeholders across Canada.
“At MBFI, we utilize science-based research and innovative farming practices within the beef and forage industry to boost producers’ economic success and environmental sustainability, and to engage the next generation of consumers on topics of public trust,” said Ramona Blyth, MBFI chairperson and a beef producer from MacGregor, MB. “So for MBFI to build this relationship with the University of Manitoba students via Mikayla is a valuable step on all of our key fronts.”
The win-win for both parties was clear to Rouire.
“This project has given me the opportunity to forge valuable relationships with members of the industry that wouldn’t arise in a classroom setting. I strongly believe the special project option has allowed me to gain real world experience in the agriculture industry,” said Rouire..
One of Mikayla’s assignments included planning an information session on campus on March 16. Students and staff had an opportunity to interact with MBFI representatives to learn more about initiatives, research, and technologies involved in the beef and forage industry and underway at the three farm sites of the MBFI.
Mikayla noted that public engagement is a critical part of MBFI’s mandate. “I quickly learned that the success of this industry in our evolving society relies on having an educated consumer base. Knowledge exchange was at the heart of some of the assignments that I completed as part of this project.”
The Agriculture Diploma Special Project is a three-credit hour course which allows a student to make practical application of scientific knowledge acquired to intensify the study of a topic of particular interest. Students must be active participants in developing the course and project requirements so that it can meet their individual learning objectives.
For more information, contact:
Crystal Jorgenson, Communications Specialist, University of Manitoba
crystal [dot] jorgenson [at] umanitoba [dot] ca, 204.474.9435
Duncan Morrison, Manitoba Beef & Forages Initiatives Communications
duncan [at] mfga [dot] net, 204.770.3548