|Resource Specialization||Food Resource Economics|
|Region Specialization||The Americas|
|International Experience(s)||Agroecology summer program and internship, France (2018); Volunteering experience on an organic farm, Belgium (2019); Planning on going for the Global Seminar, Indonesia (2020)|
"The best thing about the GRS program is its community and its interdisciplinary nature. Being surrounded by passionate people who genuinely care about you and want you to succeed gives you a sense of belonging, and it is inspiring."
Why did you choose the GRS specialization that you did?
I have always been passionate about food. When I started in GRS, I defined my resource as Sustainable Agriculture because I thought it was the perfect way to learn about food production. However, as I worked my way through my degree I realized how much agriculture is impacted by the global economy. Because of this, I started taking more economics classes and decided to shift my degree to focus more on the discipline. So, I redefined my resource as Food Resource Economics as it is more accurate when talking about my academic interests.
What was your international experience and what did you learn from it?
-Agroecology summer program in Lyon, France-
Through excursions, onsite visits, hands-on learning opportunities, and cultural activities, I learned about the multidisciplinary nature of agroecology and its role within France and the European Union. I learned about the power that consumer demand and policy play in shaping our food systems.
-Internship in Sheep Farm in Drome Region, France-
Working in a tiny town with an average temperature of 35 degrees celsius (95 F), I learned that theory and practice are quite different. Being hosted by the Farm family helped me immerse myself into the French culture, practice my language skills, and learn about the living conditions of the rural people in France. I also learned how much Agriculture varies between countries by comparing it with my experiences in Mexico and Canada.
-Volunteering experience in Wallonie Region, Belgium-
Thanks to the travelling financial support available to GRSers, I was able to volunteer in a new co-operative in the Wallonie Region in Belgium. Inspired by my time in France and willing to practice my French, I decided to learn more about agriculture in Belgium. I discovered that although France and Belgium are geographically very close to each other, some of their policies differ and as a result agricultural practices as well.
The owners and founders of the co-operative were young entrepreneurs with radically different backgrounds: an agronomist, an economist, and a lawyer. The three of them shared with me some of their motivations and struggles that come with implementing projects.