Farm06 Vol 4 Iss 3

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program doubled, hosting eight apprentices on seven operations. Next year, in 2021, the program is expected to grow even more, hosting between 12 and 18 apprentices throughout the state while also expanding into Wyoming and South Dakota. Quivira formed the NAP program in 2009 as a way to help apprentices learn the skills necessary to pursue careers in agriculture and to help farmers and ranchers find enthusiastic and hardworking people to work on their ranches, while they pass on their skills and knowledge to a new generation of agrarians. e program, which started in the southwest seeks to partner with mentor ranchers and farmers who are skilled in land stewardship, improving soil health, and agricultural practices that improve water quality and quantity. Tyler studied mechanical engineering at Purdue University, but aer some health issues forced him to take a semester off, he realized his heart wasn't in that career path. "I realized I wasn't fulfilled at all in what I was doing. I didn't have a purpose. I started thinking about alternatives; I needed to change my direction," he told me. Tyler started reflecting on his time with his parents and his experience as a kid, and he knew he loved being outside and working with animals. He also knew that going into agriculture for a career was not going to be an easy road. "ere are a lot of problems in Ag, a lot that needs to be figured out and fixed. And that is exciting to me," he said. Apprentice Natalie Berkman moves electric netting to allow the cattle into new pasture on the Milton Ranch near Roundup, Montana. (l to r) Apprentices Jeane Stafford (Schultz Ranch near Grass Range, MT), Susan Elder (Charter Rancher near Shepard, MT) and Natalie Berkman (Milton Ranch near Roundup, MT) participate in a Whit Hibbard lows stress livestock handling clinic on the Mannix Ranch near Helmville, MT. farm406 28

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