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First Came Friendship, Then Came Love

A young couple on a farm with a miniature cow and sheep.
Photo taken by Rachel Elisabeth Photography.

It’s often said that friends make the best boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands and wives. Taylor and Harrison Jenkins agree.

Long before the couple met at NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Taylor grew up in the suburbs of Johnston County and Harrison on a dairy farm in Iredell County. The two met one another through mutual friends during their junior year in 2015. Taylor was majoring in animal science and Harrison in agricultural education. Although the two can’t remember exactly how they met, they both can attest to always being around one another.

“It’s amazing to me that we didn’t meet before our junior year because our social circles overlapped a little bit,” Taylor said. 

Their friendship grew over ice cream, lunches and study sessions. 

“Our friends joked with us and said, ‘You all are dating,’ and I said, ‘We’re just friends,’” Taylor recalled. But she later admitted to using traffic as an excuse to spend more time with Harrison. 

The two became an official couple in August 2016.

“I knew whenever we started dating that it was for the long haul,” Harrison said. “Taylor is very thoughtful. I think that’s what I love most about her. If I’m having a bad day, she always finds a way to make it better.”

“He’s great to me. He treats me the way I think everyone deserves to be treated by their significant other,” Taylor said of Harrison.

After the two graduated in 2017, the couple started their careers as well as planning a wedding. They married in May 2019.

Harrison currently teaches agricultural education at Statesville High School and is an FFA adviser, while Taylor is a 4-H extension agent focused on youth development. She thinks they’re complementary careers.

“Just like 4-H, FFA is focused on developing more than agriculture knowledge in students. It’s about developing transferable skills that students can put into practice later in life,” Taylor said. 

“It works out really well with her job. She’s able to train students for FFA competitions before they get to high school,” Harrison said. 

In addition to their day jobs, the two live and work on the family farm.

“My mom said I always wanted to live on a farm,” Taylor joked. “He grew up around agriculture; I didn’t. He’s been teaching me everything from driving a tractor to how to pick up eggs in the chicken house and how to properly store them pointy side down. He’s also teaching me about planting and harvesting.”

And one of the things they enjoy doing together the most is taking care of their animals, from sheep and alpacas to goats and cows, along with their pup, Sailor.

They hope to expand their operation and incorporate agritourism on their farm so that others can learn about farming and agriculture.

Taylor and Harrison Jenkins engagement and wedding photographs are courtesy of Rachel Elisabeth Photography.