Gladys Adu Asieduwa (Ghana)
I am Gladys Adu Asieduwa from Ghana. I studied Post Harvest Technology for my bachelor’s in Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in my home country. During my course of studies, I was privileged to have studied some ecological courses which stirred up my passion for organic and sustainable agriculture, agronomy and ecology. I am looking forward to broaden my knowledge in the fields of sustainable production systems and global food production in order to help me tackle issues pertaining food security and sustainable agriculture (my fields of interest). After pursuing MSc Agroecology, I intend to upgrade to the doctorate level so as to work in the area of research and also come back to my country to lecture and train individuals in the field of Agroecology to promote food security and improve the global supply of food.
Tim Brannan (Australia)
Hello, my name is Tim I come from Australia but have been living in Europe since finishing high school. I recently completed a bachelor in Environment and Development Studies at NMBU and heard so much about the Agroecology programme that I had to stay! I have been interested in agriculture for a while now volunteering on farms and being involved in cooperatives and CSAs, this summer I worked on a livestock and grain farm near Ås. I also love foraging, cooking and eating.
I was motivated to take this programme because of the prevalent issues within food and farming systems, both ecological and social sustainability. The approach to learning and making an impact used by the programme sounds innovate and hands-on. I plan to use my elective courses to deepen my understanding of agroecology as a practice and science. I think this will fit well with my bachelor which had a larger focus on the social dimension.
Jofrid Brennsæter (Norway)
I’m Jofrid from Norway. I grew up in a small farm on the west coast, where I learned to love sheep and horticulture from a young age. For the last four years, my home has been in Oslo, where I don’t have a garden but keep bees on a rooftop. I’ve just finished my Bachelor’s degree in Plant Science from NMBU, and have previously studied things like communication and drama. I’m passionate about social justice and have been involved in development work since 2011. I’m challenged by the situation in global agriculture today, and by the many different views and meanings that exist about it! I hope to broaden my understanding of these challenges and worldviews during this course, and be a part of finding good ways forward for global and local agriculture.
Ryan Buckley (USA)
Hello! Ryan is my name and I hail from Virginia, USA. I feel that the global food system is at an extremely important turning point where fundamental changes are critical. I have spent a couple years working in the United States working on small-scale organic family farms. I have devoted the last two years in Guinea, West Africa, working with farmers in efforts to instill more sustainable practices. I worked on empowering them to provide better nutrition to their families while developing more ecologically responsible cultivation methods. It was this experience and the people I befriended that motivated me to pursue furthering of my education. I believe the double degree agroecology program through NMBU and ISARA-Lyon will provide a great platform to gain real world experience and exchange ideas with people of different backgrounds. Afterwards I hope to return to the most vulnerable and climate change-affected parts of the world, and work with farmers and foresters to make the changes necessary to nurture their land and leave it in better condition for generations to come.
Lea Chopin (France)
Hello! I’m Lea, a French student from Toulouse. I have studied agriculture and life sciences in a school in France. I’ve always been interested in the sustainable development, and my studies then led me to get involved in working towards the sustainability of agriculture and food production chains. To me, many ways of producing our food currently harm our environment. I’m convinced that agroecology is one of the solutions to get to agricultural systems that are more respectful towards nature, animals and people.
Edd Colbert (England)
My name is Edd Colbert and I’m from England. I’ve worked as a sustainable food campaigner and researcher for the last five years focusing mainly on food waste, unfair trading, and factory farming. Having tired of looking at all of the problems in our food system I’m ready to learn more about how we can build more solutions to overcome climate change and produce enough food to feed our changing populations.
Maria D'Orazio (Italy)
Hi everyone, my name is Maria, I’m Italian and I’ve been living in Norway for 5 years now. In Italy we have a small family farm and through the years I developed a special affection towards the countryside and the farming world in general. As you may understand, coming from an Italian/farming background, the topics of food and agriculture have always been specifically dear to my hearth and I’m very excited to join this Agroecology master. I hope it will give me a chance to add structure and substance to my passions and inspiration for future life projects.
Amandine Faury (France)
I am Amandine from France. Being really concerned about agronomic and environmental issues in the world, I began my studies at the Claude Bernard University of Lyon in biology and I specialized in agronomy. After a gap year in New Zealand where I was intern at Massey University in soil science and biochar, I followed with a bachelor's degree called “consultant in agroecological farming systems” at the University Paul Sabatier in Toulouse. After that, I did my internship at the INRA (National Institute of Research in Agronomy) on a project with the goal to understand the relationships between agronomic practices and ecosystemics services. My mission was to investigate crops systems, agronomic practices, and ecological indicators such as soil qualities or biologic regulations in 53 different farms.
For the past year, I’ve been travelling and studying permaculture in order to be a permaculture teacher. I’ve volunteered in several farms in different countries (Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, France, Spain), where I learned traditional farming, discovered tropical crops, and understood the challenge of being self-sufficient, and create sustainable ways of life.
I believe that we are facing one of the humanity biggest crisis within climate change and social disparities and that agroecology is the solution by storing carbon and improving the soils, by regenerating ecosystems, by using cooperation systems instead of competitive systems at all scales, by understanding nature, by re-localizing activities, by thinking about food security and the future of human being. So, I’m really enthusiast to be part of the master degree in agroecology at the NMBU where I hope to get international and interdisciplinary approaches to the ecological and social issues of agriculture and start to change the world.
Nicolas Giraud (France)
My name is Nicolas and I grew up in Paris. Later I moved to Toulouse and got closer to vast natural spaces, like the Pyrenees, its natural parks and mountain pastures, where I enjoyed outdoors activities like climbing or hiking. Thus, I started 3 years ago a degree at the Life Sciences and Agriculture School of Purpan. Studying on the close relation between agriculture and ecology concern me as I am convinced that in-depth knowledge and understanding on this matter is essential to fight against the mismanagement of our ecosystems. During the first year I interned in a cheese-making factory where I learned how to ripe cheese in a working environment promoting the values of the terroir and the marketing of local products. At the end of my second year I worked in an environmental research station in the tropical rainforest in Queensland, Australia. I lead a research project aiming at characterising the invertebrate community of the soil. Finally, I am currently completing an internship at the Technological Institute FCBA, an applied research centre in Sylviculture and Wood industry, where I am working on the maritime pine improvement program. The Agroecology course will in that way provide me new relevant tools and skills to think of innovative and integrated agricultural systems and landscape management in a sustainable way.
Zohralyn Homulle (the Netherlands)
Hi! I’m Zohralyn from the Netherlands. I grew up in the city, far removed from anything agricultural, but I’ve always been fascinated by plants and the art of cultivating them. After several feeble attempts of growing my own fruits and vegetables in my parents’ small backyard, I often wondered how farmers succeeded in cultivating enough crops to feed others. I decided to follow my interest in plants and their cultivation and I enrolled in the BSc Plant Sciences, with a specialization in Plant Production and Ecology. I care greatly about the environment and I am very interested in the working of ecosystems, the human role in these matters and the impact of agriculture on the environment. After spending my summer vacation doing volunteer work on an environmental project in Brazil, I immediately knew I wanted to expand my knowledge on subjects involving the environment. I think there is still a lot to win when it comes to the environmental impact of agriculture. I look forward to continue my education and hope that with this program I’ll increase my knowledge about sustainable agricultural farming systems.
Ole Erik Lunder (Norway)
Hi, I’m Ole Erik from Norway! I grew up on a farm 1,5 hour north of NMBU where we produce different types of grains. I have done agricultural and geography studies, and just finished my teaching degree in Trondheim, Norway. I have always had passion for agricultural production, but I found my genuine interest in agricultural challenges and the environment after my exchange to University of Queensland, Australia. I am especially interested in resource-use and food-security and I think an Agroecological approach is part of the solution to the complex challenges which we are facing. I hope that I can combine my communicative skills as an educated teacher with my agroecological knowledge in my future career.
Mallika Nair (USA)
Hi! I'm Mallika. I was born in New York City to immigrant parents from India, and was deeply impacted by the juxtaposition of family time in nature in nearby Pennsylvania and the lack of green space and healthy food in my own neighborhood growing up. I always knew I wanted to work for social and economic justice in some form. When I discovered gardening in college, I was instantly taken with and became fascinated by the art and science of growing food. I focused my environmental studies degree on studying food systems at the honors college of Florida, New College, then spent several years traveling and working on community gardens, farms, and nonprofits, to implement local, just, non-wasteful and sustainable food systems, through educational gardens, gleaning, and activism for the rights of farmworkers. In 2013, I started a food justice organization called Growing Together, in order to plant fruit trees and gardens, and provide environmental education in my community in Oakland, California. Growing Together has since planted over 1000 fruit trees in Oakland schools and communities and offered education programs to over 3,000 Oakland youth (see growingtogetherproject.org). So through that work over the last 5 years, I've become more of a forestry person, and I am excited to explore at NMBU how agroforestry, in particular, could be part of the solution for the crises we are facing on a global level, and how that transition could be made in a way that most supports and honors farmers, and the land.
Brooke Porter (USA)
My name is Brooke and I'm from Berkeley, California USA. As our planet is faced with rapid climate change, ecological degradation, and social unrest, a pivotal moment presents itself to engage with material that allows for greater understanding of these complex issues. It was with a desire to build this understanding and challenge current modes of extractive agricultural production that I found myself applying for my masters in Agroecology at NMBU. Previously I had been working on urban farms and was teaching permaculture and gardening to children in public schools. During my undergraduate work I also studied Agroecology and my thesis work focused on The Women-Led Collective Action for the Protection and Implementation of Sustainable Agricultural Practices in Rural Latin America. During my time in graduate school I would like to continue to study the intersectionality between gender, agroecology, and ecofeminism. I look forward to being apart of NMBU's community of activist and academics seeking to design regenerative systems.
Mallory Schillinger (USA)
Mallory is most recently from Austin, TX. She is an organic farmer, educator, community activist, and a returned Peace Corps volunteer. While in Paraguay, she worked with her community to advance sustainable farming techniques such as green manures, and to build youth confidence through science. That community is where she discovered her passion and curiosity for farming systems, natural medicines and how they intersect with community. Returning in 2016 and seeking further knowledge, she immediately started working on and managing a local organic farm in Austin. Looking to give back to her community, she began in 2017 to work with the local non-profit "Partners for Education Agriculture & Sustainability." There, she had the privilege to teach science through school gardens and connect children back to the natural world. Mallory’s unique background in agriculture and advocacy drives her passion for learning. She believes that agro-ecology is the only way to truly work the land sustainably. Mallory is excited to “dig in” and learn from a University that values diversity in their students as well as their farming techniques. She hopes to use her education to help give a voice to disenfranchised farmers as well as our Earth.
Timothée Vernier (France)
Hello, my name is Timothée and I'm a French rubberneck who always likes to experiment and discover what world can offer. As I was studying Humanities in Nanterre University (Paris), I got interested in agricultural issues and the existing projects and actions around the Earth, especially in urban farming. I created a tiny garden in my backyard and decided to take a gap-year to get a foothold in farming. Thus I had a short experience with an association which grows food in an urban park. Later, I did a six-month internship in the association La SAUGE with whom I've coordinated a national event aimed to promote urban farming (http://www.les48h.fr/). Straight after I followed a Permaculture Design Course, which confirmed me that Nature is definitely smart enough to resolve every problem we face. I'm convinced that dealing with Nature is definitely the best and the only way to find solutions to the worldwide issues on farming and food security. I’m looking forward to start the MSc Agroecology to better understand all these issues in a both academic and professional approach and side by side with other passionated students.