From Tanzania to the USA, Meet CAEP Horticulture and Cultural Exchange Participant Erick Kumari

Erick Kumari has big dreams of landing a career in horticulture and he knew a CAEP training program was the stepping stone he needed to get there. “Although I hold a Bachelor of Science Degree in Horticulture from Sokoine University of Agriculture in my home country of Tanzania, I realized the CAEP program would lead me towards my career objective,” Erick shared. “I was really inspired to go abroad and to have the opportunity to work in real life experiences. As a young prospective horticulturalists, it’s my dream to devote a part of my life to agriculture, especially having international experience. The CAEP program was my answer!

I trained at Bergen’s Nursery and Greenhouses in Minnesota and I am currently a trainee at The Chef’s Garden, Ohio. My host has taught me why it is important to be patient and to set goals in business. Also, he has taught me that it doesn’t matter the challenge you are facing, things may move slowly, but just keep doing. Fail-but do not fail to try!”

Some of my daily duties included checking for diseases and monitoring temperature, humidity and pH levels. I also examined plants for diseases, learned how to operate the irrigation system,  daily reports, harvesting, and shipping. As a grower, I was responsible for caring for plants, in addition to staying in constant communication with the head grower about all progress in the greenhouse.

I have personally benefited from the CAEP program as I had the opportunity to share, live, and work with people from around the globe. I have made friends and networked with people from all over the globe. The CAEP program is wonderful. You learn by doing, gain hands-on experience, and learn about different cultures with people from around the world. Don’t hesitate if you want to improve your career, the CAEP program is the answer to your destiny.”