There are many female farmers or farmers’ wives and daughters nowadays who are making their mark in agriculture. Hands-on women who know about milking cows, dipping cattle, can help twin lambs to be born, put up a fence, drive a tractor, and who work and live full lives on the farm.
We recently visited a few of Tuks Landbou’s female students. These ladies are passionate about the agricultural industry and look forward to changing the city lights for a career in agriculture very soon.
From a very young age, Anelie Joubert has had a love for animals. Her dream has always been to become a game warden, but early in her high school career she decided to pursue stock farming instead. Anelie is currently a master’s student in Animal Science at Tuks Landbou.
“What I enjoy most about the agricultural industry is its diversity. One of my greatest loves is nature and working with animals. To see how something grows from a small calf to a full-grown animal that in the end contributes to the food supply is incredible.
“Farming requires adaptability, and I think one can really learn so much from farmers these days to have to adapt to your region, your climate, and the breed you farm with,” says Anelie.
She says: “I am very excited and positive to see that women are becoming more and more involved in the agricultural industry – 70% of our final year group were female students, so one can really see that the interest among women in the industry is also increasing.
“I am really excited and passionate about the industry and what it also means for me and my profession. I am currently completing my master’s degree in animal nutrition and really hope to make a big contribution and impact in the industry soon,” adds Anelie.
“Agriculture is essential. When I think of a world without agriculture, many things will be lost such as jobs, food security, and more. I can’t imagine a world without agriculture!” says Anelie in summary.
Anelie Joubert, master’s student in Animal Science at Tuks Agriculture.
Lana Strydom, a third-year Animal Science student at Tuks Landbou, says that her greatest highlight from childhood has been farming with her father. From early morning to late evening farming is the big highlight of her holidays.
When Lana had to make a career decision, an older gentleman asked her what she does in her holidays and free time, after which she knew that she would be happy if she could farm for the rest of her life.
“The farming community is really remarkable; the togetherness and camaraderie of a farming community cannot be found anywhere else. Everyone in the agricultural industry has a common goal and drive,” says Lana.
Lana is more interested in livestock than in crop farming. She says that she also recently developed an interest in agricultural economics.
When Lana is asked about the role of women in the industry, she replies: “I don’t think the industry can be divided into men’s and women’s respective roles. Every individual has his strengths and weaknesses, and it depends on you whether you will flourish and make a success of what you undertake.”
Lana considers her father to be her role model and someone she looks up to. She says: “My father is such a good example for me to keep going, and going, no matter how difficult it gets. He also taught me that faith in your farming is extremely important.”
Lana sees herself far away from the city in the next few years: “Maybe even back to the farm; I won’t mind,” she adds. She also believes and trusts that she will eventually end up in the industry where she needs to be, and she would like to contribute to the industry however and wherever she can. “Agriculture is definitely our future,” concludes Lana.
Lana Strydom, third-year Animal Science student.
Sanja Schaap says that she has always been interested in the agricultural industry and from childhood it was a highlight for her to visit her grandparents on the farm near Settlers on the Springbokvlakte. Here she learned to drive a tractor, ride along in the harvester, and take out eggs early in the morning.
Sanja is a master’s student in Production Physiology and Product Quality at Tuks Landbou. She is currently focusing her studies on impala meat production.
“I think it is important to make people aware of the value in venison and also that there is an opportunity in the market to produce commercially,” she believes.
Sanja says it is important that ladies are exposed to the agricultural industry from a young age if they want to pursue a career in it.
“Agriculture is very important and a sustainable industry. I think the future in agriculture holds so much more than what we realise. I encourage any young lady who wants to enter this industry to do so. There is a future for women in the industry, and I am very excited about what the future holds,” she concludes.
Monét Kleynhans is a third-year Animal Science student at Tuks Landbou. Monét’s dream is to help people and animals. After Monét was not selected for veterinary science, it did not hold her back from still pursuing her dream and love.
“I am very interested in different breeds of cattle, their functionality and adaptability to different environments and climates, and how their meat production is affected by that,” says Monét.
She adds: “I think a big thing I’ve learned about the industry is that it’s very unpredictable and an industry with a lot of risks. The agricultural industry teaches you to think on your feet, to make plans, come up with solutions, and adapt. It takes hard work, but it is all worth it!
“Women in the agricultural sector is not a strange trend. This is clearly visible from how we as female students are accepted and not frowned upon. Although the future is a bit unpredictable, I hope to make an impact in agricultural communities in the near future; not only large communities, but also smaller communities; to use what I have learned to help farmers and advise them in terms of optimising meat production – from genetics to cross-breeding and sustainable livestock farming practices.”
“I think few people realise that agriculture is the primary production of the porridge, bacon and eggs you eat in the morning, to the clothes you wear. Without agriculture, humanity will not be able to survive,” concludes Monét.
Case IH is committed to encouraging young, up-and-coming students of both genders and showing them the opportunities available to them in the sector. Case IH is actively involved in Tuks Landbou and supports the agricultural students by empowering them and exposing them to the agricultural industry beyond just their study guides and campus. If agriculture is in your blood, do not let anything stop you from pursuing your love!