Mentoring Moment: Inspiring the next generation

Published: Sep. 26, 2023 at 5:31 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Ashtyn Den Herder grew up around the landscaping industry.

Her father worked in landscaping all her life, so when it was time for Ashtyn to pick her own career, she knew this was the one for her.

But it also meant finding her way in a mostly male-dominated industry.

“I think in college we only had four females in my class,” Ashtyn said.

After graduation, Ashtyn found her way to Landscape Garden Centers. That’s also where she found herself a mentor.

“Ashton had come to me about under two years ago, newly out of college, and I kind of wanted to take her under my wing and show her what I know about the industry,” said Ashley Carlson.

Ashtyn says working with Ashley has been nothing short of inspirational.

“I appreciate her help more than she knows,” Ashtyn said. “I don’t think I would have ever been a foreman or even out in the maintenance department without her.”

For Ashley, being a mentor to a young woman in a budding industry has taken on a lot of meaning.

“I’ve had some great mentors. I’ve had quite a few guys that I’ve looked up to that helped shape me into who I am today. Without them, I don’t know if I would have stayed in the industry,” Ashley said.

She hopes this tradition of women helping women is one that only continues to blossom.

“It’s gratifying to see more females coming into our industry and to see that they have other ones that they can hopefully take under their wing someday, too,” said Ashley.

There is always a need for more mentors in our community.

To find out more about how you can get involved, visit: