Upon obtaining his Ph.D. in agronomy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1935, Henry Ahlgren's department arranged for him to have a 10-month traveling fellowship funded by the American Cyanamid Company to observe and study research programs dealing with pasture improvement for livestock in all of eastern Europe, including Scandinavian countries.
For the next 20 years, he taught courses in pasture management, pasture problems, and agronomy at the University of Wisconsin. As an Extension Director in the Cooperative Agricultural Extension Service for 22 years, he joined with other directors from the Midwest in analyzing existing programs and developing and implementing a nationwide expansion of the program, thus establishing a basis for a sound and realistic Extension Program that really met the needs of farmers and rural communities in the country.
Over his years of work in agriculture, he has seen dramatic changes in attitudes toward farming. The scientific methods once looked upon with disdain, suspicion, skepticism, and even hostility, are now readily accepted and widely used in modern farming and homemaking. The result has been a shorter work day, a lighter work load on the family farm, increased purchasing power, and the elevation of farming to the level of a profession.
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