Grace German, a senior in animal science, has made the most of her time at Iowa State by leaning into her passions and seeking ways to enrich her educational experience. She grew up on a certified organic diversified livestock and crop farm in Holstein, IA, where she became interested in how plants and animals can work together to improve the sustainability of agriculture.
As a College of Agriculture and Life Sciences' (CALS) Honors student, Grace took this interest and applied it to her research project: The Role of Beef Cattle in Regenerative Agriculture. Her goal was to enter into the climate change discussion with reasons cattle are essential to sustainability. Her project focused on cattle being catalysts for biodiversity, allowing us to preserve pasture while still producing food, improving the soil, and helping plants take more carbon into the soil. Her presentation is posted for viewing on the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture’s website and will be featured in the center’s yearly report. “CALS Honors allowed me to hone in on things I really wanted to learn about,” said Grace on her honors experience. “Honors courses and my project let me put extra time into my degree in the areas of beef nutrition and sustainability.”
Grace also runs her own business, Grace’s Pies, where she uses her baking skills acquired through years of 4-H to cater to farmers markets and individual orders. She offers pies, jams, rolls, coffeecakes, and breads during the summer and has seasonal offerings for holidays. “Start small, and work with what you have where you’re at,” she advises entrepreneurial students. “Grow and learn and don’t assume you need to start with a fully-fledged idea.” Grace will also be self-publishing a cookbook in 2021 featuring her favorite recipes. Stay up-to-date with her baking adventures on her Instagram.
Throughout her time at Iowa State, Grace has also been involved with Sigma Alpha, CALS Council, CALS Ambassadors, Block and Bridle, Cardinal Key Honor Society, Collegiate Cattlemen’s, Memorial Lutheran Student Fellowship and helping to build the Animal U 4-H curriculum. Grace encourages students to pursue opportunities and leadership positions where they can genuinely learn. She is a firm believer that differences make us stronger and greatly contribute to the animal science major. “The animal science major and minor hold some of the most incredible, talented people I’ve met on this campus, and each one is completely different in their interests. No matter what you want to do after graduation, you have a place in the animal science program.”
To learn more about the University Honors Program, please visit: https://www.honors.iastate.edu. Information on the CALS Honors program requirements can be found here: https://www.cals.iastate.edu/student-services/honors.