Students 2022-2024

 Olumide Adedeji  (Nigeria)

Olumide Adedeji

Olumide Adedeji

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Hello, I'm Olumide from Nigeria. In the last 8 years, I have been involved in agricultural research and extension services within West Africa where I have trained numerous farmers on the correct use and application of pesticides, seeds and conventional agricultural practices with the aim of increasing their yields.  During this time, yield increases have truly been recorded but at a negative expense to our ecosystem which has, in turn, caused detrimental environmental damage along with a consequent rise in food production costs and food prices making our farming system quite unsustainable in the long run. 
To buck this negative trend, I realized we need to go back to the drawing board and learn how we can produce food using methods that work in better consonance with the environment in ways that are beneficial, sustainable and better aligned with smallholder farmers' practices. That was when I learned about Agroecology and its evolving mix of principles that can help our farmers adapt, make agriculture more sustainable and place our hunger and poverty eradication goals within distance. Studying at NMBU promises a good mix of culture, disciplines and perspectives I need to absorb and understand the concept of agroecology much better as well.

 

Katharina Angerer (Germany)

Katharina Angerer

Katharina Angerer

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Hello, I’m Katharina from Germany. Due to growing up in a family full of people who work in the hospitality industry I’m passionate about food since I’m little. I wanted to learn everything about each process in the food supply chain. Therefore I started with an apprenticeship as a chef, continued with practical experiences in kitchens, farms, wholesalers, food start-ups and an innovation hub. Meanwhile I completed my Bachelor of Engineering in Agribusiness Marketing and Management.

But form my huge motivation, making the food industry sustainable, I have and want to learn more. I want to learn how we can move towards a more environmentally friendly and resource-efficient agriculture. Because it's about the big questions that concern us all - How do we want to feed ourselves in the future? How do we want food to be produced? What impact will this agriculture have on the climate? What traces will it leave behind in agriculture, in the soil, in the water, in the air? And will farmers be proud of their work again - without justification, without explanation and without hidden doubts?

Our system must change, otherwise we continue destroying the base of agriculture - the soils, the biodiversity, and the farmers. When thinking about food it is not just about the product itself. It is about so much more. It is about the nature, where our food is growing and about the people who are part of the whole process. If we are willing to transform this industry, there is so much potential in its future.

I want to make a difference in the world – therefore I can’t be happier being part of this master program, for getting ready changing the agricultural industry

 

Ambjørn Bardal (Norway)

Ambjørn Bardal

Ambjørn Bardal

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My name is Ambjørn. I am from Horten, Norway. I have a bachelor’s degree in food science, technology and sustainability. In this program I learned about different parts of the food industry. I found the agricultural part, including both conventional and alternative agriculture, particularly interesting.
Studying agroecology at NMBU seems to be a great opportunity to learn more about conventional and alternative agriculture, and their differences. I am eager to learn more about challenges associated with aligning ecological and economical sustainability, and the need for scalability of alternative agriculture and food producing systems. I hope that studying agroecology will give me the knowledge and experience necessary to contribute to the implementation of sustainable practices in modern food-production.
Finally, attending this program will be a great opportunity to meet people with different backgrounds, who share the same interest. Being able to exchange views and visions could give additional inspiration.

 

Skjalg Bjørkevoll (Norway)

Skjalg Bjørkevoll

Skjalg Bjørkevoll

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I’m Skjalg, 31 years old. I have a bachelor in civil engineering and extensive traveling experiences around the world. Through my travels I often found myself working and work-trading on farms and farming projects which were trying to live and grow food more sustainable and this is where I started to learn about this area. I applied to the master in agroecology because I’m interested in human’s connection to the natural world and how we can create ways of living that better facilitates that. I appreciate how this program is taking a broad, holistic view to the wicked challenges of farming and food systems, and also how it teaches through action-learning. I strongly believe that theory need to be supported by an understanding of each farm’s or food system’s uniqueness in terms of climate, landscape, social context etc. to be truly valuable. 

 

Nikolas Buchheister (Germany)

Nikolas Buchheister

Nikolas Buchheister

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My name is Nikolas Buchheister. I am German but spent the last 6 years living in British Columbia. There I completed my bachelor's degree and worked in agriculture as well as the environmental sector. I am very passionate about creating more resilient local food systems with a focus on biodiversity. 

I joined this masters programme in order to gain a better understanding of agroecology and to learn how to use this knowledge to address the many problems that agriculture currently faces. I am excited to work with farmers in order to better integrate ecological principles within agriculture.

 

Amélie Cilia (France)

Amélie Cilia

Amélie Cilia

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My name is Amélie Cilia, I'm a french student at the master level engineering school in agriculture, life sciences, food science, marketing and management of PURPAN in Toulouse. During these three years within PURPAN I developed a strong interest in agroecology and sustainability challenges. I have known for a long time now that I would like to be involved in the agroecological transition because I have the idea of working in an institute which develops new agroecological practices. I therefore oriented my professional experiences in this perspective. These experiences confirmed my attraction toward ecological issues. Developing eco-responsible initiatives within an eco-village in Denmark made me realize the importance of these techniques both on a practical and human level. Agroecology is a discipline of the future which I am really enthusiastic about.

I have learnt about farming and food systems during my Bachelor, now I would love to learn through actions learning how to solve environmental, social and ethical issues in order to make agroecosystems more sustainable. The transdisciplinary approach of this program combining both scientific and social aspects, will give me the key to become an actress willing to engage with innovative and sustainable solutions for agriculture. Moreover, it will enhance my social skills, and help me grow towards the person I want to be, both professionally and personally.

On top of that, the opportunity to have many abroad experiences would allow, in addition to the open-mindedness it gives, to have a global vision of the agroecological techniques and situation all over the world which is not negligible regarding today’s challenges. This program will help me develop this aspect which will make future diagnoses a lot more accurate and realistic, thanks to this master approach. The DNA of this program reflects the ideal vision I have for the continuation of my studies. Furthermore I consider myself as open-minded, I love discovering and learning about new cultures, places and people and I’m involved in the life around me so I know for sure that this master would develop this open-mindedness and give me the opportunity to evolve. In France I was a part-time police officer and my military experience taught me to show great cohesion with a spirit of mutual aid which can be useful in the team work requested.

 

John Davis (USA)

John Davis

John Davis

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 My name is John Davis and I am looking forward to commencing my studies in Agroecology in the coming weeks. I am from the United States but I have spent most of my professional life abroad working in the environmental/agricultural sector, specifically in sustainable development. I spent over 3-years living and working in West Africa. My introduction to the region was through the U.S. Peace Corps in Guinea, where I lived and worked for over 2-years as an Agroforestry Extension Agent. Most recently, I worked as a Program Associate with the non-profit social enterprise "myAgro", based in Senegal. Prior to that, I worked in urban farming in the Seattle-area with the Berlin-based vertical farming company "Infarm". 

I chose this Master's program because I wanted to compliment my practical knowledge working in the agricultural & environmental sectors with a stronger theoretical foundation. I also appreciate the interdisciplinary and hands-on learning that the MSc program's curriculum provides. I look forward to studying with an international group of students as well as hearing different perspectives from my peers during the course of study that awaits me. 

 

Alette Elvenes (Norway)

Alette Elvenes

Alette Elvenes

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I am a gardener from Oslo with an interest in social- and environmental issues and nature overall. I grow a small marketgarden with my family and do arborist- and overall gardening work. I also like to go hiking in the woods to forage and I like to travel to experience new places and cultures. My interest in these things combined, led me to apply for a master in agroecology, and I'm really looking forward to learn more.

 

Fredrik Andre Fongen (Norway)

Fredrik Andre Fongen

Fredrik Andre Fongen

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Hello, my name is Fredrik and I grew up in Oslo, Norway. I finished my bachelor's this spring in Archaeology and Palaeoecology. I started my studies in Trondheim at NTNU and went on exchange to Scotland where I decided to stay. The program in Scotland offered me the opportunity to study agriculture and human-environmental interaction in the distant past through palaeoecological methods. I have always had an interest in ecology and agriculture from a young age. And now that I am 35 I am finally studying it formally. I spent my 20s travelling the world, living in many different places, and learning about the cultures of the world. This led me to study the cultures of the past. Studying the first agriculturalist has given me a perspective that I look forward to bringing into my study of Agroecology.  

In Scotland, I lived in Orkney, where the environment is harsh with lots of wind. Though the climate is mild, the islands have very fertile soil that has been farmed for many centuries. The community in Orkney is small and immersed in tradition, still keeping many traditional farming practices. Living in Orkney and being part of a small farming community has given me an appreciation for the many challenges of modern agriculture. Agroecology is the right fit for me as I want to gain the skills and knowledge needed to make a sustainable difference in the world today. The issues of farming and food systems are interconnected throughout the world and are some of the more important issues to work on today. I am looking forward to learning and being challenged in this program.

 

Ellen Peterson (USA)

Ellen Peterson

Ellen Peterson

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My name is Ellen Peterson. Introducing kids to edible invasive plants on the Mississippi River, roasting delightful coffees in Oslo, having easy and affordable access to organic CSA-grown vegetables, and working with recent immigrants to catch and identify native game fish are a few life experiences that have directed my choice to continue my education with the MSc Agroecology program at NMBU. It is my intention that this MSc program will enable me to expand my understanding of science, agriculture/food systems, and the natural world, and also to learn more about the facilitation of human connections and community. I have a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science with an emphasis in Education and Communication from the University of Minnesota. I am eager to learn with and contribute to an international group of students and learn from Norwegian case studies.

I have lived in Norway for 5 years with my husband and twins. I deeply enjoy cycling, wilderness recreation, foraging, traditional handcrafts such as embroidery and weaving, and reading natural history and scifi. 

 

 

 Kushal Poudel (Nepal)

Kushal Poudel

Kushal Poudel

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I grew up surrounded by, and in close connection to nature in Annapurna Rural Municipality of Nepal.  After completing my Bachelors in Agriculture and understanding sustainability, I was filled with a purpose: to explore climate solutions that could transform our food and agricultural systems. I realized that a Master's Degree in Agroecology can help me gain a holistic understanding of the ecological, social, cultural and economic aspects of our food system. I choose this program as it will allow me to learn experientially from diverse communities, people and cultures around the world to do my part to fulfill one of the most burning needs of today’s world: fixing our broken food system.

 

Katrin Schmidt (Germany)

Katrin Schmidt

Katrin Schmidt

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My name is Katrin Schmidt. I am 25 years old and graduated from the University of Applied Sciences Hamburg, Germany with a B.sc. in Nutrition and Home Economics. With an additional Master I would like to specialize in a more sustainable and future oriented program and therefore applied to the Master Program Agroecology, which provides one with the necessary knowledge and awareness to work in the field I want to specialize in.

 

Coline Tourreille (France)

Coline Tourreille

Coline Tourreille

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I am Coline Tourreille, a French student from Isara. I have decided to join the double degree programme MSc Agroecology with NMBU because throughout the course at Isara I got an overview of the whole agriculture and agri-food sector. All this knowledge led me to a deeper interest in agronomy especially in the new farming methods. Specializing myself in agroecology would give a concrete meaning to my studies in relation to the current issues. Agroecology could help to answer the challenges that agriculture is facing today such as climate change.

Moreover, through my work in different organic farms as a woofer and an intern, I begin to understand the farmer’s choices better depending of the environment, the climate, the farmer’s purpose, the economic situation and all these parameters. I truly wish to continue to enhance my comprehension of the different farming systems in this semester at NMBU.

Beside studies, I also do sports such as Aikido, bike, hike and ski. I enjoy reading and embroidering as well. Finally, I am always ready to try out new recipes and flavours with my friends. For all these reasons, I am really excited to begin this semester at NMBU !

 

Giovanni Zucca (Italy)

Giovanni Zucca

Giovanni Zucca

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Ciao guys, my name is Giovanni Zucca, I am 29 years old,  originally from Sardinia, but I grew up in Milan, Italy. I am a former cook who loves foods in all their forms and aspects. My other deep passion is to travel and meet new people with their cultures and way of life.  I have spent the last years working and studying in Piedmont, where I did my bachelor’s degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures at UNISG. The core of the bachelor's was an interdisciplinary approach to food studies which offered a holistic overview of a wide area of sustainable food production, ranging from economics, law, human ecology & biodiversity, sociology, and agroecology.

What fascinates me the most are the interactions among animals, nature, human activities, and the related artisanal and small-scale food productions. Each territory expresses its peculiarity according to its morphology, climate, flora, and fauna. Nowadays, this concept could be simplified with the term terroir. Agricultural products manufactured wisely by herders, farmers, and cheesemakers, perfectly represent the interconnections between all the parts. I firmly believe that agroecology is one of the most exciting practices to achieve sustainable & regenerative food systems, both in the agricultural sector and in animal husbandry. Sharing agroecological knowledge among different stakeholders, shareholders, academics, and consumers is crucial in strengthening the local food system and in creating a new path toward a more systemic and holistic thinking approach.

Gaining knowledge in agroecology thanks to this master's can improve my skills in this field of research. I would like to share my future experience and expertise with the wide community of farmers, prod, users, and academics, to empower the community.

Published 1. August 2022 - 12:34 - Updated 19. August 2022 - 10:20