While the pandemic has altered the ability for many college students to build face-to-face relationships and have in-office guidance during summer internships, it does not mean the experience has been any less rewarding, according to two interns working at AgriNovus Indiana.
Allie Decker and Carson Canfield, both of which are undergraduate students at Purdue University, navigated the world via Zoom and work-from-home.
They shared their story on the Ag+Bio+Science podcast presented by AgriNovus and hosted by Gerry Dick.
“We went straight from Zoom university to Zoom work, which was really interesting, but it’s been great,” said Decker, who is earning a degree in agribusiness management. She did not grow up on a farm but was raised in a rural community in northwest Indiana.
“Agriculture wasn’t on my radar until high school when I joined FFA,” said Decker. “Mainly because my brother did it.”
Carson Canfield grew up in Zionsville and is pursuing a business degree. His work at AgriNovus this summer validated his desire to pursue a career in the ag sector.
“It really hit me that a lot more people in the business sector need to venture into agribusiness because it’s a growing sector,” said Canfield. “Some business might not grow, but there are so many entrepreneurs and tech people in the ag business. The agbioscience sector is going to shoot up soon.”
The two collaborated on a project this summer called the AgriNovus Field Atlas, an online career exploration portal. They hope this tool will guide high school and college students to look at the vast array of possible agricultural careers.
“We just did an interview with some of the interns at fellow ag companies across Indiana and one of the people was like, ‘I wish I had this when I was a freshman in college.’ And I think that’s exactly what we’re trying to do,” said Canfield.
Decker says many college students misunderstand what major they need to work in agriculture.
“’We have chemical engineers, data science, information sciences. So, there are so many different avenues that you can take,” explained Decker. “That’s what we’re really trying to portray.”
The Field Atlas is scheduled to be launched this fall.
Each week, host Gerry Dick conducts conversations with leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs in Indiana’s agbioscience sector, discussing the confluence of food, agriculture, science and technology.
The full podcast will be available Monday morning. Click here for more information on how you can listen.