Meet Erin Viergutz (’24): dairy farm girl, CUW early childhood and elementary education/Lutheran education major, and forward on the Falcons women’s basketball team.
This Sunday, June 26, Erin and her family will have the honor of hosting the annual Shawano County Farm Bureau’s “Brunch on the Farm” event on her family’s dairy farm, Triple D Dairy, near Clintonville, Wisconsin. We asked her to share a few thoughts about this cool event, her family farm, and where she thinks her Concordia experience will lead her.
What is “Brunch on the Farm” all about?
“The purpose is to promote dairy farming and thank farmers for all their hard work, and to invite the community to see what farms are like, and see the cows, and learn more about where their food comes from. It also helps people understand how families grow up through farming, through multiple generations, and how much hard work and dedication it takes to keep a family farm going. But my favorite part is the ice cream stand! They have strawberry and maple syrup flavors.”
Tell us about your family’s farm …
“We milk 500 cows and farm 1,150 acres, and this will be the third time my family has hosted Brunch on the Farm. My dad, David, is the fifth generation of our family running the farm, and my brother, Jacob, plans to be the sixth generation. The farm was originally settled in 1872, so later this summer our family will be presented with the Wisconsin Sesquicentennial Farm Award.”
Why did you decide to pursue teaching?
“My aunt is a kindergarten teacher, and my cousin teaches middle school. I have a lot of teachers in my family, so I have always grown up wanting to be a teacher. I have done a lot of activities through church, and just through school, working with children, and it seemed like a natural choice.”
Where does basketball fit in?
“I started playing basketball in third grade, and have just grown up playing it. My mom’s side of the family all played basketball, so I think that’s where I got most of my ability. Coming out of high school, I talked to Coach Stacy Brunner-Jones, and she was interested in recruiting me. When I toured the school, I really loved the faith part of it and the small, homey vibe of the campus, so I decided to commit to Concordia.”
Have you enjoyed your Concordia experience?
“Oh, yes. I’ve met a lot of people who have the same interests as me—and also a lot of people who don’t—and we’ve all still grown to become friends. It’s been a great experience to get to know and be friends with people who aren’t necessarily a lot like me.”
What are your plans and hopes for the future?
“My hope is to come back to my hometown and teach someday, so I can be close to the farm. If God leads me a different way, of course I want to take it, but right now that’s the plan.”
For details about Brunch on the Farm, visit shawanofarmbureau.com/brunch-on-the-farm.
— This story is written by Mike Zimmerman, corporate communications manager for Concordia University Wisconsin. He may be reached at email@example.com or 262-243-4380.
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