Agriculture Communication M.S. University of Florida
Agriculture Science B.S. California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, CA
Resume (103 KB PDF)
As a third generation rancher, agriculture has always been a strong force in my life. It is what drives me and ultimately led me to earn a B.S. degree in Agricultural Science with an emphasis in Agricultural Communication and focus in Animal Science. With my undergraduate degree completed, I am excitedly working to earning a graduate degree within the field as well. I felt like the University of Florida was a good fit for the type of program I was looking for and the assistantship position, editor of CALS Connection a UF alumni magazine, was in line with my career goals.
In addition to my Ag Science degree, I also completed a minor in Agricultural Communication and Studio Art at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. As an undergraduate I had numerous opportunities through course work and volunteer time to explore many aspects of agriculture in the United States. Those experiences only helped to strengthen my interest in the industry. Completing the two different minors gave me a whole new set of skills and experiences outside of agriculture as well. My desire now is to use these techniques in a way that promotes agriculture in the media, including print design. The Agriculture Communication Minor gave me the opportunity to take courses within the Journalism and Graphic Communications departments; thus strengthening my technical skills and allowing me to successfully complete projects both individually and in group settings. For example, I had the chance to work in several different branches of student media including KCPR, the Cal Poly radio station, CPTV, the campus television station, and Ag Circle, a student produced magazine. I honed my writing techniques, expanded my knowledge of graphic design and learned to use industry software. In addition, I developed a web site, created a logo and pamphlet for a local business, and anchored a weekly newscast on KCPR. My Studio Art minor allowed me to explore new mediums like paint, glass, photography, and computer based design. I believe these experiences have given me a unique perspective that very few agriculture industry professionals have. The skills I developed will help set me apart from other agricultural communications professionals and equipt me to communicate across a broad spectrum of traditional and new media.
Agriculture is one of the largest industries in the United States but also one of the most misrepresented. Coming from a cattle ranching family and an agriculture based community, I understand the importance of American agriculture and the struggle every farmer and rancher goes through to produce a healthy marketable product. Completing multiple minors gave me the chance to combine my passions and interests, and gain the skills needed, to achieve my goals. During my time at Cal Poly, I also participated in many clubs and activities such as Young Cattlemen’s, Western Bonanza Livestock Show, and Agriculture Communicators of Tomorrow. It gave me the chance to combine my communication skills and artistic drive to develop promotional media. I used my senior project as a way to combine and practice my newly developed skills. A group of students and I collaborated to reconfigure the Ag Circle magazine into a sustainable and profitable business. What was a university supported student activity is now well on it’s way to being self-supportive. While exploring financial and advertising opportunities, we continued to contribute content to each issue of the magazine. Designing pages, advertisements, and digital images were some of the jobs that I not only preferred, but in which I also excelled.
My desire to represent the agriculture industry in a positive light is one of the reasons I wanted to pursue a graduate degree. Through my undergraduate course work, I acquired many skills to help me reach my goal of being a positive voice for agriculture, but I feel there is still a lot for me to learn. My creative nature and my passion for the arts have driven me to want to expand my knowledge of design and how it can be used to promote an industry. While although I have only just started my master’s degree, I will have the knowledge and skills to promote agriculture and educate the public about the industry they rely on everyday.