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A 40 chances student experience – Audio

A 40 chances student experience

Kate Griswold, Student
Department of Life Sciences Communication
UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences


3:04 – Total Time
0:18 – Kate from Black Earth
0:37 – The 40 Chances program
1:02 – Bolivian agriculture
1:15 – No simple solutions
1:41 – quinoa, soybeans, alpaca
2:04 – Appreciate what we have
2:30 – Good life experience
2:55 – Lead out


Sevie Kenyon: A unique student experience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, we’re visiting today with Kate Griswold, student in the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and I’m Sevie Kenyon. Kate, first tell us a little bit about yourself, where you’re from, what you do, and what your major is.

Kate Griswold: So my name is Kate. I grew up in Black Earth, Wisconsin, just west of Madison on a hobby farm. I’m currently pursuing a degree in life sciences communication and will graduate in May. I am really interested in agriculture marketing.

Sevie Kenyon: Kate, you participated in a unique program called 40 chances?

Kate Griswold: So I was a part of the AFA Agriculture Future of America 40 chances program. That was a one-time program sponsored by the Howard Buffett Association. Howard Buffett donated some money after winning an award and that money went to help us learn more about global agriculture throughout our four years in college and then have an international experience.

Sevie Kenyon: And you better describe for us that international experience you had.

Kate Griswold: So I traveled to Bolivia this winter break. I got to learn more about global hunger and food access in Bolivia and really experience a third world country. It’s very different.

Sevie Kenyon: Kate, what did you bring back with you from that?

Kate Griswold: That experience helped me see how much education takes to make an impact globally. It’s not simple solutions to fixing hunger as we need to educate more people or we need to send money to certain places. It really takes in country people with experience to build trust with local people and make an impact in the country.

Sevie Kenyon: Maybe describe some of the agriculture you visited with there.

Kate Griswold: So our main project was looking at quinoa production. Quinoa is a small grain that has become really popular here in US. We also got to experience soybean production and alpaca and sheep production. So really interesting and very different agriculture in a mountainous and desert region than what we have here in the Midwest.

Sevie Kenyon: Anything specific kind of stick in your head?

Kate Griswold: Yeah. We are very fortunate here. That’s one of the things I came back with, was a greater appreciation for all that we have. Whether that’s water, nutritious food, the basic necessities of life, and indoor plumbing so those are things that they don’t have in Bolivia in many places and things that I got to experience first hand and coming back from a trip like that makes you really appreciate what you have.

Sevie Kenyon: Kate, how is this likely to affect you in your life going down the road?

Kate Griswold: I’ve always been interested in global agriculture and how we can help people. Experiencing it first hand and seeing how a different country runs and lives was really important for me and my career. I will be working for John Deere after I graduate and this experience will hopefully help me bring value to that company and bring value in my daily life. Hopefully we can all learn to appreciate what we have here.

Sevie Kenyon: We’ve been visiting with Kate Griswold, student in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Madison and I’m Sevie Kenyon.