Posted on October 20, 2011 with No Comments
Brian Trudell ’09
Agronomy Outreach Professional
University of Vermont Extension – http://www.uvm.edu/extension/
St. Albans, VT
Major: Animal Science
How would you describe what you do on a typical day?
My role as a UVM Extension agent is to reduce nutrient and sediment loading in Lake Champlain. I provide education and technical support to Vermont livestock farmers in the Lake Champlain Basin on nutrient management and tillage practices.
My primary areas are Franklin and Grand Isle counties, where the majority of farms are dairy producers. I help farmers manage soil health with soil testing and detailed nutrient management software programs. By reducing non-point nutrient and sediment losses from agricultural fields, surface water quality is improved. This makes the Lake Champlain a better place for wildlife and the many people who enjoy it during our beautiful Vermont summers.
What advice do you have for students searching for jobs or internships in your field?
Create a well-rounded body of work for yourself by leaving your comfort zone. Do internships in far-away places to experience ideas that you may not hear from you college professors. While high-end internships with established organizations may be desirable, you may learn more with a start-up operation.
How did your time at UVM, both in and out of the classroom, prepare you for your position?
While at UVM I learned how people without an agricultural background perceive our industry, especially those that are appealed by organic and/or vegetarian diets. Critical thinking is very important when discussing agriculture and food systems issues.
What motivates you to go to work every day for this organization?
I am building knowledge in a new area because crop and soil work was not a focus of my undergraduate studies. I plan to operate my own dairy business in the future. By working with dairy farms, I build my connections and reputation every day. I aspire to be a leader within the Vermont agriculture industry and see this job as an opportunity to build a solid foundation for my future.