agriculture, higher education, learning communities, agricultural background


Community-Based Learning | Higher Education | Rural Sociology


Paulette Ratliff-Miller


Farm kids are not attending college in as great of numbers as urban kids. Perhaps this is due to farm kids’ comfort-level in close-knit communities, despite their participation in educational programs to expand their horizons. Most people don’t understand that farming or agriculture exposes kids to the different aspects of business. Additionally, agricultural backgrounds provide skills and value to create career advantages for going into non-agricultural fields of study or developing businesses of their own. I have experienced the impact of an agricultural background throughout my pre-college life and during my time at Grand Valley State University. In this paper, I will be discussing how agricultural backgrounds affect youth throughout their educational and/or work life. Agricultural backgrounds aid in the success of youth from the time they are born throughout their careers by giving them the valuable skills of hard work and business knowledge, whether they choose higher education or to immediately enter the workforce.