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South Dakota Farmers Union Supports Next Generation Ag Professionals With Graduate Scholarship

By Lura Roti for South Dakota Farmers Union

Raising a flock of sheep for his 4-H and FFA projects is how Grady Gullickson initially became interested in ruminant nutrition.

“My brother, Gage, and I were in charge of how their feed was managed,” explained the fourth-generation Flandreau, South Dakota livestock producer. “I really enjoyed learning about the nutrition aspect and how you can impact their growth through feed.”

Helping livestock producers is the reason the 2022 South Dakota State University graduate is pursuing a graduate degree in ruminant nutrition at North Dakota State University.

“Margins are generally pretty tight throughout the livestock industry,” Gullickson explained. “By understanding what is going on inside the animal and how feed impacts performance, I can help producers make money by improving feed efficiency.”

Gullickson is on target to receive a masters in ruminant nutrition from North Dakota State University in 2024. After graduation, Gullickson is considering pursuing a PhD in ruminant nutrition. Ultimately, Gullickson hopes to return to South Dakota to help livestock producers develop efficient and cost effective feed rations by working for a livestock nutrition company.

South Dakota Farmers Union together with Traveler’s Motor Club supports Gullickson’s goals.

“The future success of family farms and ranches depends in part on innovation through research,” said Karla Hofhenke, Executive Director of South Dakota Farmers Union. “Supporting the next generation of researchers, like Grady, by helping fund their education is among the ways Farmers Union supports family agriculture.”

Gene Hammond, President, and principal owner of Travelers Motor Club agrees.

“We are a rural motor club so rural America is important to us. We believe the best way to preserve rural America is to invest in the next generation,” Hammond said. “To provide for someone who wants to advance themselves and provide services through becoming educated as a veterinarian, or agronomist or another career to benefit rural citizens, we just see great value in that.”

Gullickson said he appreciates the $2,500 scholarship.

“We are in an age where lots of people are disconnected from agriculture,” Gullickson said. “And that’s what I really appreciate about organizations like Farmers Union and businesses like Traveler’s Motor Club– they support youth because we are the future of agriculture.”

To learn more about how South Dakota Farmers Union supports the next generation through education and scholarships, visit www.sdfu.org and click on the Education link.

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