New England Farmers Union Education Foundation is proud to announce its inaugural scholarship winner for 2015, Ellie Pendleton of Rockport, Maine. Ellie, a New England Farmers Union member, will be a sophomore at the University of Maine, and is pursuing a double major in animal science and education. As a freshman, she worked on the university’s farm milking dairy cattle. She wins a $500 award to help with college expenses.
For the past six years, Ellie has worked at Aldermere Farm, one of the world’s premier breeders of Belted Galloway cattle. The 136-acre farm is owned and managed by Maine Coast Heritage Trust, a statewide land conservation organization dedicated to protecting the scenic beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, ecological diversity, and working landscapes of the Maine coast.
Ellie raises and shows Belted Galloway cattle, market steers, and lambs, and through her work at Aldermere Farm, she met a boy with special needs. Working with him through the farm’s programs, she saw significant gains in his physical and developmental abilities and she decided she wants to “design and implement an agricultural therapy program for youths with special needs,” according to her application essay.
A 4-Her, Ellie has attended the Big E in Westfield, Massachusetts, and while there, has connected with young people interested in agriculture from throughout the east coast. “For New England agriculture to grow, a strong agriculture community is needed. Stronger youth connections provides a stronger agriculture community,” she wrote. Well said, Ellie! Congratulations and good luck from all of us at New England Farmers Union!