There was never any question that Sherry Porter was going to the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, now the Faculty of Agriculture at Dalhousie University. After all, it was something of a family tradition, starting with her father and uncle and continuing with her brother and cousins.
‘I grew up on a dairy farm outside Truro and my father really encouraged me to go, but I wasn’t initially sure it was the right fit with my interests,” says Porter. “It turned out to be the best decision for me.”
For Porter, who studied economics, the Agriculture Campus (AC) was both a home and community – a place where she made lifelong friends and began to explore the opportunities of the world around her.
“You were encouraged to ask questions, to approach things from a business perspective and look beyond the farm gate to see the importance of agriculture in general. And that proved very beneficial as I moved from agriculture into the corporate world.”
Porter regularly found herself drawing on her AC experience in senior positions with Sobeys, Shoppers Drug Mart and Nova Scotia Power.
Investing in educational excellence
Inspired by the impact of the AC on her life, and how its research has contributed to the agricultural industry throughout the region, she began thinking about how she could help maintain its tradition of educational and research excellence.
“I thought it would be nice to recognize the lengthy relationship my family has had with the campus, so I decided to make a gift to the Faculty of Agriculture in my will.”
Porter’s intent is to help produce a new generation of well-educated leaders who can take the region’s dairy industry to the next level of success.
“The industry may change due to international pressures, so my motivation is to give this next generation every opportunity to remain competitive.”
Propelling the AC
Also motivating Porter is the hope her gift encourages other alumni to follow her example by giving back to the AC.
“I feel the value of making a gift in your will is that it brings stability to an organization. When you support the Faculty of Agriculture, you’re investing in the future of our region and our economy.”