Iowa State University
I will be a junior this fall studying agricultural communications at Iowa State University. I have done two summer internships while in college. My first internship was with Agronomy Services Plus, LLC in Rochester, MN as a crop scout and my second this summer was with Gavilon Grain, LLC in Moore, MT as an elevator manager intern. Within Iowa State I am involved in many different organizations. These organizations include being on the executive board for VEISHEA as the Security Co-Chair, Vice Chair for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Ambassadors, Recruitment and Morale Co-Captain for ISU Dance Marathon, and I am very active in the professional fraternity Alpha Gamma Rho. Upon graduation I will pursue a career in the agricultural industry.
Posted on Aug 15, 2011
at 8:49 AM
This is the final blog of my Leadership Iowa University experience. I must say I did not expect it to show all of the opportunities Iowa has to offer along with the work being done to provide even more openings for future business ventures. LIU in combination with Business Horizons and Leadership Iowa are the most promising programs Iowa has promoting the networking possibilities and businesses within Iowa. We had the opportunity to visit, tour, and or network at Pella Corp, Tassel Ridge Winery, Embria, the Iowa Soybean Association, and many other prominent businesses. Each day was planned to allow us to network with different representatives from different businesses and learn about what those businesses were doing to give back to Iowa. I think Leadership Iowa University is an amazing tool for college students to really learn what Iowa has to offer them after graduation.
In addition, there were three things that really hit home for me. The first and most important thing I learned I think most of my fellow Leadership Iowa University participants would agree with was Rule #6. Jim Verlengia came and spoke to us at the Iowa Soybean Association and he gave us some very simple advice. Live life by Rule # 6. I lack the presence to really empower with these words in the same way Jim did (I would suggest attending one of his seminars if you have the opportunity), but being able to laugh at yourself and living your life and not worrying about other's expectations were his key points. The second thing I took away from LIU is there are endless resources in Iowa, you just have to be open to new ideas. Sometimes you end up in a career you never would have imagined for yourself, but you would not change it for anything. Third, but just as important as the other two, make connections with different minded people. If you only work with like minded people and a problem arises how will you fix it if the usual way does not work? Everyone sees things from a different view point and it is those differences coming together that create new possibilities. I have really enjoyed this experience and look forward to giving back to Iowa what it has given to me.
Posted on Aug 12, 2011
at 9:32 AM
Today we visited the Iowa Soybean Association for the agricultural part of Leadership Iowa University experience. We heard from many different professionals in the agricultural sector. There are many different career opportunities in agriculture. There are so many opportunities that if an individual were interested in business, finance, marketing, etc. there are places for them in agriculture. I may be a little biased because I am an agricultural communications major, but I cannot help but promote this exciting time in the industry. With the recent volatility in the economy it is very hard for college graduates to find jobs in their career path, but the world will always need to eat. I know there are many opportunities for someone in agricultural communications like positions in marketing, broadcasting, managerial positions, etc. The possibilities are endless and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for me.
Posted on Aug 10, 2011
at 10:36 AM
There were a lot of things I thought Iowa lacked. All we’ve been hearing for years now is that Iowa has been losing jobs to other states for various reasons such as not enough opportunity for growth of new businesses, a lack of technology, so on and so forth. I have learned today that I was very mistaken. It seems as though Iowa with Des Moines playing a key role, has become an excellent place for young professionals to come and start their careers. Its population has grown substantially in recent years, and all of this attraction has actually gained recognition on a national scale. This being said, I am supposed to be talking about what I think Iowa lacks as far as opportunities or assets go. Technology is something that we as a state need to embrace and improve on rapidly. The world is an ever changing place and technology is going to be at the forefront of that change. With that in mind I think the main thing currently lacking in Iowa right now is a willingness to learn and properly educate. We used to rank in the few top spots in the nation in education, but that has fallen by the wayside here in recent years. It seems as though there is a significant amount of apathy towards learning by both teachers and students. Now before you assume I am trying to blame teachers and or students, hear me out. With policies like No Child Left Behind, schools must make sure all students achieve certain grades. It would be very difficult for them to make sure students that do not do as well achieve these grades with a tougher curriculum, so instead they make the material easier for the entire class. This lack of challenging students reduces their creative thinking and problem solving which in turn makes them less prepared for the real world. How can we as a state, even as a nation, promote this? It is a vicious circle that must be stopped before it is too late. We must challenge the kids of today and give them the new technologies and problem solving skills they need to compete.
Posted on Aug 10, 2011
at 10:35 AM
Today LIU traveled to Pella to experience what a small town in Iowa has to offer. This was exciting for me because I use to live in Monroe when I was much younger and I have visited a few times throughout the years, but I had never had the opportunity to see what businesses had to offer. I was absolutely amazed by the tour and group roundtables we had with the employees at Pella Corp.
Everyone there treated each other with respect and honestly and seemed to care about each other. In times of economic hardship such as these, it is refreshing to see that a large business such as Pella Corp. is still taking care of its many workers. Not only this, but their factory productivity and quality are extremely impressive. Each one of the stations in their factories had employee suggestion boards. This may seem like standard procedure, but the amount of time and effort put into these boards and rectifying the situation really gave me the idea that they mean to do business in the best and most efficient way possible. Every window or door they make must meet a high standard, and if they cannot achieve that, they will not sell it.
They are also very ecologically friendly because they only do business with companies dedicated to using renewable resources. In addition to their already great business structure they will often times hire other companies within Pella to bring in lunch or provide food for a function they are holding. Pella Corp isn’t just another large manufacturer; they are a thriving business that is giving back to the surrounding community.
We also traveled to a local winery and had the opportunity to meet and network with individuals from local companies and even some politicians. I had a wonderful time just talking with everyone and finding out about what they do and how they impact the Pella community. With the many meetings we had today and all of the great things we saw, I would say that Pella is an excellent example of the endless opportunities that the smaller town atmosphere in Iowa has to offer young professionals.
Posted on Aug 10, 2011
at 10:34 AM
Iowa is well known for its agricultural sector. According to a study done in 2009, production agriculture and ag-related business employed about 17% of Iowans and accounted for $72.1 billion dollars of the state’s economy. With this large of an impact on Iowa’s economy, agriculture plays a large part in future growth of Iowa. This is also an exciting time to be in the industry with new developments in technology and a growing demand to feed the world. I have a wonderful opportunity to be a part of this new era in agriculture and I want to capitalize on that. When I was fourteen I began by working on a farm just outside of my hometown of Creston, IA. Working for the Bakers I began my foundation with a strong work ethic. In the past two summers I have been fortunate to continue progress in my career by obtaining internships in the production agriculture sector. In these internships one was in more data collection as a crop scout for Agronomy Services Plus, LLC. While stationed in Rochester, MN I worked with another intern Kyle Fischer and the owner of Agronomy Services Plus, Van Larson to provide valuable information to clients about issues such as weed and disease pressure, infestation, and chemical damage. This summer I worked for Gavilon Grain, LLC as an elevator manager intern in Moore, MT. I learned many things about commodity merchandising, elevator management, and customer relations. I have also gotten involved in many organizations on campus at Iowa State University to further develop my leadership skills and give back. I am involved in VEISHEA on the executive board as the Security Co-Chair, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Ambassadors as Vice Chair, and ISU Dance Marathon as a Recruitment and Morale Captain. With these leadership roles I have learned many things, but one thing that I have learned that is very important to me is that in order for others to enjoy being in Iowa the way that I have I must give back. With all of the skills and opportunities that Iowa has given me I want to do my part to make sure those are available for generations to come.