As winter comes to a close and spring is on its way, Rebecca Vittetoe can’t wait to get into the fields to see how the 2019 season will play out.
The new field agronomist at Iowa State University (ISU) Extension with an office at the Washington County Extension office, Vittetoe hails from Plymouth County in northwestern Iowa. She grew up on a corn and soybean farm and had always enjoyed being part of agriculture. While in later years she knew she was not going to return to northwestern Iowa to live, she hoped to continue working in agriculture.
“I enjoyed the way of life,” she said. “I think a lot of it has to do with watching my dad and grandfather on the farm and seeing what they did day in and day out. Growing up on the farm I was interested in corn and soybean production and what it took to grow the crops.”
Her interest in crops prompted her to pursue a degree in agronomy from Iowa State University in Ames. She also met her future husband Jordan Vittetoe while they were at Ames.
Vittetoe laughs that she and Jordan had met in a soils class. After graduation, Vittetoe worked a few industrial jobs before the field agronomist position opened. She has worked for the extension for about four years, covering central Iowa. Recently she began covering Washington County as well.
As a field agronomist, Vittetoe helps to apply research from ISU on area farms. She give information to producers as a way to help them make informed decision on their operations. During the winter, much of her time is spent holding informational meetings. During the spring and fall, she helps with projects on area research farms. During the growing season, she spends much of her time on field calls. She serves 10 counties in Iowa.
This fall, Vittetoe will earn her master’s degree in agronomy. She plans to continue being the field agronomist and plans to stay in the area.
“It is a nice job and it gives me the flexibility for it to grow as I grow,” she said.