Emmalee Allen is a UW senior who traveled to Kitale, Kenya in the Summer of 2012. During her time in Kenya, Emmalee studied at the Manor House Agricultural Centre, where she received a three month certificate in bio-intensive agriculture. To receive the certification, she successfully completed courses in: community development, bio-intensive agriculture, family nutrition, appropriate technology, livestock management, and crop production.
Emmalee says that she would recommend the Manor HouseAgricultural Centre to others. She says, “The professors and staff are amazing, flexible, and knowledgeable. They really cater to what you are interested in learning and are great about getting you out in the field working hands on.”
During the first part of her trip to Kenya (May and June), Emmalee completed labs, lectures, and practical’s at the Manor House facilities. During the second half of her trip (beginning in July), she visited several agriculture operations for a week at a time. Emmalee traveled to many operations including, “a tea and sugar factory, a rose farm, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, a local orphanage” among others.
Emmalee’s dream job is to work with agriculture in Africa, and she said “This summer gave me an opportunity to experience part of my dream.” Emmalee’s favorite memory from her trip is working at a primary school, which rehabilitated street children. She taught the students about bio-intensive agriculture, a type of small-scale organic farming. Not only was the school able to apply the methods to their school farm, but many of the schools staff members, including their headmaster, applied the new farming method to improve their yields at home.
To other UW students thinking or traveling abroad, Emmalee says: “Go open and willing to learn; be flexible. Be willing to jump into every opportunity and embrace the culture open arms.”
If you’re interested in traveling to Kenya, or earning an agricultural certification abroad, feel free to contact Emmalee at firstname.lastname@example.org.