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Class IX Seminar 3 - Agriculture's Future in North Dakota

Members of RLND Cass IX met in Fargo for their third seminar, Agriculture’s Future in North Dakota, February 12-14. The blizzard blew them in, and the wind blew them out.

by Kristina Dick and Kayla Lawson

Members of RLND Cass IX met in Fargo for their third seminar, Agriculture’s Future in North Dakota, February 12-14.  The blizzard blew them in, and the wind blew them out.

Class IX Green House Photo

Wednesday morning Class IX participants began the seminar with a review of Emotional Intelligence (EQ) information from their January seminar in Minot.  The class was able to reflect on any intentional changes they’d made regarding their EQ and the EQ strategies they’d been using. 
Rachelle Vettern, NDSU Extension 4-H Youth/Leadership Specialist, spoke to the group about ethical leadership.  The focus was on the six pillars of Character Counts. Particpants also took a six pillars inventory.
Mel Nelson, Executive Management Systems, went over information from Part II of the Work of Leaders.  The group focused on how to lead productively with people from the same or different leadership quadrants.
Wednesday evening, Jill Wilkey provided training on business dinner etiquette.
Thursday morning began with a visit to the NDSU Veterinary Diagnostic Lab.  Brett Webb, Vet Diagnostic Lab Director, gave a tour of the facility and shared how the work they do benefits farmers and ranchers both locally and nationally.
The next visit was the NDSU Greenhouse. Julie Hochhalter, Greenhouse Manager, shared information about the greenhouse as participants toured the facility.
Dr. Bill Wilson, NDSU Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics Professor, provided information at NDSU Barry Hall’s trading room about the trading and stock market aspects of agriculture.  William Aderholdt, Grand Farm Program Manager, shared information about the Grand Farm project, a completely autonomous farm of the future.  Scott Meyer, Ozbun Executive Director of Entrepreneurship, followed with a presentation of the newly created NICE Center programming at NDSU with its focus on entrepreneurship.
Thomas Hill, United Way’s Vice President of Community Impact, and the Burgum Foundation’s Executive Director Katie Itterman were the final speakers at Barry Hall.  They shared how their organizations are working together to help solve mental health issues in rural schools.
Class IX participants traveled to the Great Plains Food Bank where Anna Johnson, Regional Services Manager, and Janice Tweet, Community Initiatives Coordinator, gave a tour of the facility and explained their processes to reach North Dakota’s rural communities.  While there, participants heard the cheers of joy as the food bank reached its Giving Hearts Day goal of raising enough money to pay for one million meals.
Lori Capouch, Rural Development Director of the Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives, and Karen Ehrens, owner of Ehrens Consulting, shared information about the importance of rural grocery stores and the out-of-the-box thinking needed to keep them in rural communities as Class IX participants completed the afternoon meetings.
The RLND Class IX Leadership Dinner was held at Crooked Lane Farm near Colfax. Mary Jo Larson, owner Crooked Lane Farm, shared information about the ecosystem that’s been created around their rural ingenuity and how the community has backed their vision.
Friday morning Pete Hanebutt, North Dakota Farm Bureau’s Director of Public Policy, led participants in a fun and interactive activity on the happenings in Congress and how one decision can sway your constituents’ opinion of you. 
The seminar came to an exciting conclusion with the reveal of RLND Class IX’s 2021 International seminar location.  Class IX participants will travel to Spain in February 2021 where they will learn about Spain’s agriculture, domestic and foreign policies, as well as its culture.

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