The End of Our Journey

by Dr. Bobby Soileau

Bad internet service and more than 30 hours of travel has led to a late final posting for our trip to South Africa. Today I wanted to reflect on our trip and thank some people who have supported our program.

Our group was able to see a lot of agricultural production as written about by some of our class members in this blog.  They left South Africa with great respect for the producers they met. In addition, they realize the social problems facing South Africa are far greater than the problems we face in our country.

The international trip broadens the world view of our people. It gives them a perspective of world agriculture beyond the basics of raising crops, livestock, seafood and timber.

I’m grateful for all the support we have for our program. These trips wouldn’t be possible without them. I’m thankful for the support of Dr. Gina Eubanks on this trip. We are blessed to have the support of our administration. I cannot say enough about the hard work of Jim Monroe and A.J. Sabine on our trip. They worked tirelessly throughout.

I want to thank Mike Danna for his inspiration. He changed the way we told our story on these trips. He made it a better experience for all of us, in particular our class members. There were many times throughout the trip that Jim Monroe and myself would say, “Mike would have loved this.” I miss my friend but he will always be with me.

Finally, I want to thank all of our class members. You made this trip very special. Your willingness to learn continues to make a difference with our program. I’m grateful to spend time with each and every one of you. We will see you at graduation.

Dr. Bobby Soileau is the Director of the LSU Ag Leadership program.