As you start your summer internship, have you thought about what to ask your supervisor? Here are five questions to ask during your internship:
1. Can we talk about expectations?
One of the most important questions to ask during your internship: make sure you understand what your supervisor and coworkers expect from you. However, don’t forget about your personal goals as well. One major point of the internship is to make sure you get the most out of it. Use the experience for personal growth. If you ask this early on, it will help everyone establish a good idea of what all the expectations are so you don’t walk away from the internship down the road with it not meeting any of your own goals.
2. What are some areas I can improve on?
There’s a good chance your employer won’t fault you on your strengths, but will probably notice your weaknesses. Ask how you can improve! By asking your supervisor this, you are showing your willingness to learn. Feedback is the best way to figure out how you are doing as an intern. Being a coachable person makes for a great intern. Willingness to listen from the experts and use their advice to better your skills will not only benefit you now, but also later in life.
By Danielle Tucker, 2017 AgCareers.com Marketing Intern
You probably haven’t seen anyone out handpicking corn with a husking knife or a peg strapped to the palm of their hands. Why not? Because science, technology, engineering and mathematics have helped change agriculture. These fields are what are known as STEM careers.
Farmers cannot feed the world alone. If we solely rely on the diminishing number of farmers to meet the demand of food, there won’t be enough to go around. Pursuing a STEM degree will open a countless number of doors for you.
If you are wondering what kinds of opportunities there are, the designated STEM degree list has over 400 degree programs listed. If you were to glance over the list, you would find most of them relate to agriculture in more ways than you may realize. You can match these degrees to hundreds of job opportunities that exist within agriculture. Students pursuing degrees in STEM are carving new tools to find solutions to feeding the drastically rising demand for food.
Ralph Towell was raised in packing houses, watching his mother and father ship beans, cucumbers, and squash to vegetable stores. His father and grandfather started their own produce distribution business. Despite the agricultural family he was born into, there came a point in his professional career where Ralph realized he was making decisions based on his gut and not his expertise: the decision to go back to school.
The agriculture industry continues to shift and change. If you’re working in this field, you may sometimes reach the same point Ralph did and wonder how you can continue to grow in your career. Which leads to the question, “Are you ready to go back to school?” There are many factors that go into a decision to finish your undergraduate degree or continue on to earn a master’s. Here are a few questions (and answers) to help guide your decision-making process.
We’ve all heard advice about being prepared for an interview. We know to do our homework on the company; know the individuals we’ll be interviewing with and their roles. We think through situational questions and our responses. We’re prepared to tie our experience to the responsibilities of the role we’re interviewing for. And above all else, we come prepared with questions! But do we go past that in our preparation? How often do we think about doing our own analysis of the company; our own interview of them, and how to spot a great boss? I can tell you from personal experience, and some record of job hopping, that it comes with practice. Not to suggest you have to job hop to figure it out – that’s me learning from my mistakes. Hopefully, you can take this advice as you look towards your next, and perhaps last, interview!
How do you spot a great boss and the right fit for you? I’ve tried to simplify what I’ve learned and heard from many mentors over the years it four simple categories.
In 2017, business majors and graduates are looking for ways to increase their earnings. They want to go into their field knowing that they will build a career worthy of the work that they put in. But, they need not worry. There are plenty of options out there.
Those that have a master’s degree in business administration – also known as an MBA – have several careers to choose from. All of these options currently pay their workers a high wage. As a result, people who are still looking at business careers can definitely boost their salary.
Guest Blogger: Christine Kilbride, ChickMaster
‘Tis the season…for college applications! Many high school seniors are currently navigating the grueling college admissions process: writing essays, requesting recommendation letters, deciding where to apply and choosing a major.
Choosing a major may seem like the least daunting task on the list – you can always change it, right? Well technically you can, but changing academic majors can lead to costly extra semesters or even the need to transfer to another school.
So where should you start? Statistically, the most popular majors include Nursing, Education, Business, Psychology and Communications. If none of those options appeal to you – don’t fret; there’s a growing sector that you may not have considered for your future career: agriculture. And particularly, poultry science.
Guest Blogger: AgriCorps Fellow, Lyndee Lum; Agriculture teacher and FFA advisor in Colorado
Towards the end of my senior year as an undergrad, I remember feeling lucky that I had an answer to the, often dreaded, question, “What are your plans after graduation?” I was able to confidently respond with my intent to join AgriCorps and work in Ghana, Africa for 11 months. Granted, this was only one year of my life that I had planned ahead of me, but it was something. At that point, I wasn’t entirely sure what my role would be in the world. My farm background and love for plants and soil led me to believe that I would somehow be connected to the ag industry…but, how?
Six months later, I knew. In a doorless, dusty classroom, with a broken chalkboard and more students than desks, I found my passion: teaching. The students I taught were, hands-down, the most important part of my year in Ghana. I found inspiration in the small “Aha!” moments, and I knew that this was something I had to pursue when I returned home.
Coming from a small town in Southern Saskatchewan, agriculture was one of the clear choices I had when deciding on my future career path. I signed a full-time contract during the fall of my senior year at the University of Saskatchewan to be a Crop Production Advisor with Crop Production Services Canada (CPS), back in my hometown. Although I had a full year of school to finish, I was already mentally preparing for my full time career as a Crop Production Advisor, more commonly known as an agronomist.
You learn pretty quick that each day is a bit different when you are an agronomist. Shortly after harvest, farmers are already planning their crops and growing plans for the upcoming year. A good portion of the time I am working in the world of sales, selling the necessary elements that go into growing a crop. This includes seed (canola, corn, soybeans, wheat and forage seeds), chemical and fertilizer to my growers for various chemical and seed companies (including our own CPS/Agrium/Loveland Crop Inputs products). This involves sitting down with the grower and discussing everything from past yields of crop to soil testing results. The rest of the winter months are spent putting on grower meetings and attending various training sessions in order to become a better advisor for my customers.
Today’s agriculture industry is truly a global network and as a job seeker if you have experienced agriculture around the world, you bring a coveted perspective to the workplace. This experience abroad could last for just a few months or a few years but the skills you gain could help you land your dream job back in North America. For me, that experience was serving as an AgriCorps Fellow in Ghana for a year supporting sustainable agricultural education development. Below are some special skills I acquired abroad and how to demonstrate these skills to employers.
• Resourcefulness: When I worked in a small office in Ghana, we didn’t have a Walmart or a closet full of office supplies to work with so I had to be resourceful when planning trainings and events. This skill in the U.S. might not be in the form of materials but a way of thinking. Being able to use who and what you know to develop a creative solution to a problem is a great asset to any job.
• Being a ‘dot connector’: In order to increase global awareness for 4-H clubs in Ghana and the U.S., I connected a club from my home state to begin a pen pal system with 4-H Ghana. Being able to connect the dots within your network helps create sustainable solutions to challenges and shows an employer the value you add in creating a network and solving problems.
Lingle, Wyoming is home to 480 people and my graduating class had 27 people. My home state has about 580,000 people and is comprised of 97,800 square miles. I now live in Washington, D.C., home to 67,000+ people all squeezed into just over 68 square miles. Needless to say, the two locations are very different!
I grew up on our family farm three miles outside of town where I raised cattle and hogs and worked on our family farm where we grow corn and alfalfa hay. I was active in 4-H and FFA and was fortunate to travel around the U.S. attending conferences, conventions and judging contests. Those travel experiences early in life helped me realize how much there is to see and do in the world and created a desire to take my rural experiences and one day head to “the big city.” After completing my undergraduate degree, I slowly made my way to the East Coast, making stops in Nebraska (graduate school), Florida (for a four-month job that wasn’t a fit), and Indiana (working for the National FFA Organization) before landing in our nation’s capital.