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2017-12-5: Pioneering rural women leaders look back on pivotal US study trip, twenty years on – ABC Rural

By Jess Davis

Just shy of twenty years ago, a large group of women working in rural industries embarked on an overseas study trip that would change the trajectory of many of their lives and point them towards the peak of their professions.

The second International Women in Agriculture Conference was held in Washington DC in 1998, attended by 120 Australian women and a select 30 from rural Victoria.

The Victorians were awarded bursaries from the State Government for the three-week trip that included an agricultural study tour.

Most had never been overseas before, and many of them now say it was a pivotal moment in their careers.

At 21 years of age, Caroline Coggin was the youngest delegate to attend the Washington DC conference.

“I actually feel that perhaps it has changed me more than I realised and perhaps I don’t give enough credit to travelling to Washington and being on that tour,” Ms Coggin said.