Growing up with a farm family, one must advocate for the lifestyle and encourage consumer education.  For Bemidji native and senior, Tori Koch, majoring in agricultural business with an animal science minor is the perfect fit. Koch’s experience as an active 4-H member and working on her family’s farm sparked her interest in agriculture as a future career. College took this curiosity one step further, and mentors at the University of Minnesota Crookston have helped her shape her interest into knowledge and experience in the field of agricultural business and animal science. 

Koch states, “Growing up on a dairy and beef farm, one must always be prepared to embrace change and innovation.”

This is exactly what she has done. Koch began her higher education at Bemidji State University studying nursing. She soon realized that her true passion was in her background of farming and caring for animals. In the back of her mind, she always had a mindset geared toward the agriculture industry, she just didn’t realize it yet.

She traveled to Crookston for a tour and confidently says, “The day I toured the University of Minnesota Crookston, I knew I wanted to stay.”

On-campus, Koch is involved in a variety of things. She is the active president of the Animal Science Association, treasurer of the Crookston Student Association, Campus Rec intern for the Wellness Center and captain of the UMN Crookston Women’s Tennis team.

Outside of UMN Crookston, Koch is a member of the American Dairy Science Association and 2018 delegate at the Agriculture Future of America (AFA) Leaders Conference. Koch looks forward to traveling to Orlando Florida for a three day AFA Technology Institute in March where she will continue to network and learn more about the future of agriculture.

Her opportunities do not stop there. With Koch’s love for travel and learning, she grabbed the opportunity to study abroad in France for three weeks in May 2018. She traveled with a group of students visiting a variety of farms and studying international agriculture.

Returning to the states, Koch started her summer internship at Autumnwood Farms in Forest Lake, Minn. Koch was responsible for assisting with all farm management duties, including milking 60 cows, calf chores, fencing, and much more. Looking forward, Koch dreams of combining her love of traveling, agriculture, and working with people into her lifestyle.

Today, as Koch sees graduation just over the horizon, she looks forward to extending her experience outside of the university setting to real-world businesses.