News Release

Study in France Allows 16 Students at the U of M Crookston to Learn First-hand about Agriculture Production, Processing, and Marketing Systems

By ltollefs on
Monday, April 5, 2010

A trip to study production, processing, and marketing abroad has given 16 students from the University of Minnesota, Crookston an opportunity to have international experience in agriculture. A class in international agriculture production, processing, and marketing systems, taught by Associate Professor Harouna Maiga, Ph.D., and Terrill Bradford, both instructors in the Agriculture and Natural Resources Department, traveled to France from March 10 - 22, 2010, for study.

Paris_study_abroad.jpgStudents had the opportunity to meet, ask questions, and share ideas with French instructors, students, farmers, processors, and wholesalers/retailers. During their stay, students were involved in several activities including a visit to one of the largest fresh food market near Paris and meeting with the organization of the Chambers of Agriculture of France (APCA) in Paris. They also visited beef production systems, a meat processing and marketing plant, a dairy and cheese processing center, and visited the National Agronomic Institute of Research of France (INRA) and its research stations.

The students were able to learn and to appreciate agricultural production similarities and differences between France and the United States.  Students also met with students from two French agricultural universities (ESITPA in Rouen and ENITA in Clermont-Ferrand) to share ideas and academic opportunities. Maiga and Bradford met with officials of the same universities to discuss future academic collaborations as well as exploring internships and short course opportunities for students of both countries and working to establish a memorandum of understanding for academic cooperation between institutions.

Amanda Adkins , a senior from Detroit Lakes, Minn., majoring in agricultural education, enjoyed the study abroad."The class was a great opportunity to view agriculture at an international level and through a very different set of production standards and consumer demands," Adkins said. "In addition, it allowed our group to view attractions that most people see and hear about on TV or the Internet but only dream of actually visiting."

During the week-end students took a break from study and spent time as tourists in the city of Paris with its majestic Church of Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower, Le Louvre museum, L" Arc de Triumph, Seine River and boating, and surprisingly, some students found themselves in Disney World.

Faculty and students would like to thank the international office for helping plan the trip and offering our students the opportunity to learn. They also would like to thank Dr. Jean-Francois Hocquette, Director of Herbivores Search Unit of  INRA/Theix for organizing the course in France. They extend their gratitude to Mr. Francois Porin for organizing the tour of Rungis Fresh Food Market near Paris.

To learn more about opportunities to study in the field of agriculture at the U of M, Crookston, visit

Today the University of Minnesota, Crookston delivers more than 25 bachelor's degree programs and 50 concentrations, including several online degrees, in agriculture and natural resources; arts, humanities and social sciences; business; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of about 1,300 undergraduates, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit

In the photo: First row (l to r): French host, Mr. Sebastin; Emily Espersen, Brainerd, Minn.; Kari Olson,Lancaster, Minn.; Amanda Adkins, Detroit Lakes, Minn.; Christina Blair, Brainerd, MInn.; Katherine Schliep, Holloway, Minn.; Rebecca Rhodus, Parkville, Mo.; Nicole Koscielniak, Hillman, Minn.; Associate Professor Harouna Maiga, Ph.D.; and  Instructor Terrill Bradford.
Second row: Krystal Caldwell, Warwick, N.D.; Amber Miller, Randall, Minn.; Brianna Kaschmitter, Sauk Rapids, Minn.; and  Samantha Lahman, Parkers Prairie, Minn.
Third row: Joshua Lamecker, Sauk Rapids, Minn.; Michael Kitchell, Ada, Minn.; Jessica Choc, Lengby, Minn.; Teresa Aakre, Hawley, Minn.; and Marissa McWilliam, Winger, Minn.