July 26, 2021 at 5:59 p.m.
Parent: Jeri Kay Schiffman
Employer: Whittle Farms
2021 graduate, Edgewood-Colesburg High School
18 years old
Tell us your favorite experience of your employee helping with chores (answered by supervisor Shania Falck). That’s a hard one, since I’ve worked with him since he started. Every milking is an experience in itself. Once when the cows of pen five got out and we had to run to get them, I lost a boot in the sand and Hunter laughed pretty hard.
What qualities does your employee have that benefit the farm? He’s hard working and very eager to learn. He brings laughter to the farm, and everyone needs a laugh.
What are your responsibilities on the farm? My responsibilities are to run the milking parlor, including to keep up on sanitation, keep an accurate record of each pen during my shift, and start up and shut down of the milkhouse. On the side, other than what is required of me for my position, I volunteer for extra duties. These duties include dry lot cleanup, barn maintenance and field work.
When did you begin helping on the farm? My beginning on the farm is all thanks to my sister, Shinia. Her family got me into 4-H. That led me to start showing dairy cattle. After this, I was given the opportunity to apply at Whittle Farms through my sister, where I have now been employed for four years.
How do you balance school, extracurricular activities and farm chores? I devoted my entire time to Whittle Farms for the first three years I was employed. I left band class and choir class voluntarily to make time for homework. My mother always said if my grades slipped, I wouldn’t be able to work the large number of hours that I had been putting in, so of course, I worked extra hard to keep my grades up. In my fourth year, I came to be in a relationship with my lovely lady. Therefore, I chose to back off on my work load a little bit for some time to start the true path of my life.
How has working on the farm shaped your character? While I cannot easily answer that, I can say it provided me the honor of being the Iowa FFA Dairy Production Placement Proficiency winner and a finalist for Iowa Star in Production Placement this spring.
What do you love most about farm life? For me, no matter the stress that follows is the fact that almost every day I aid in the production of a necessary product for the people of this nation.
What is one thing you have learned from working alongside your employer? Where there is a problem, there is always a solution.
What are your plans for the future? I plan to attend Northeast Iowa Technical College in Calmar, Iowa, for the John Deere Tech Program, which is a two-year associate degree. After college, I’ll be starting my next path with my lovely lady.
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