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Experience Ag Sciences

Student stories from the College of Ag Sciences at Penn State highlighting experiences such as internships, club activities, studying abroad, and careers.
For part of her research on nutrition in Bangladesh, Emily Seiger sat in on 50 interviews with the mothers involved with the food safety study. The mothers were asked about hand-washing techniques, food storage, and their child’s eating habits outside of the home. 
October 9, 2017

Emily Seiger, a community, environment and development major in the College of Agricultural Sciences, is gaining insight into problems related to food safety, hygiene and food security around the world.

The Nepalese village of Thulo Pakhar was devastated by an earthquake in 2015. In the summer of 2017, CED major Kelli Herr examined how volunteers who travel to Nepal for relief efforts can impact the local economy.
October 3, 2017

Kelli Herr, senior in community, environment and development in the College of Agricultural Sciences at Penn State, spent her break a long way from home in Thulo Pakhar, Nepal. She worked with a group called All Hands Volunteers, a U.S.-based nonprofit disaster relief organization.

Laura Reese, a plant sciences student who interned at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, often communicated with the astronauts working on the International Space Station via this live link. Here, astronaut Peggy Whitson harvests cabbage plants.
September 15, 2017

Plant sciences student Laura Reese spent her spring semester working for NASA in Cape Canaveral, Florida. She performed research in conditions meant to emulate growing plants in space.

Aaron Blakney, an environmental resource management major, tries out the HAZMAT suits with his fellow CDC interns during the summer of 2017.
September 13, 2017

Senior environmental resource management student Aaron Blakney spent the summer of 2017 analyzing the impacts of hazardous materials during an internship with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Alex Barna performs with Essence of Joy, one of seven faculty-conducted choral ensembles in the Penn State School of Music. Organized in November, 1991 by Anthony Leach, the choir performs sacred and secular music from the African/African American choral traditions.
August 24, 2017

Alex Barna, a junior from Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, has discovered an opportunity to distinguish himself from other pre-med students in the College of Agricultural Sciences' immunology and infectious disease major.

As part of their senior capstone project in biological engineering, students designed a device that assists apple pickers. The device mounts on a vehicle that can travel between the trees in an orchard.
July 25, 2017

For their senior capstone projects, biological engineering students at Penn State designed possible solutions to real problems in agriculture and the environment.

Francis Alvaré participated in a multi-part prescribed fire experience for the National Guard at Fort Indiantown Gap as part of his major in forest ecosystem management.The National Guard conducts controlled fires to maintain the safety of its grounds and practice how to deal with wildfires.
June 6, 2017

Francis Alvaré, a forest ecosystem management major with a minor in military studies, assisted the National Guard's forestry department in a series of prescribed fires on training facilities as part of an independent study program in the spring of 2017.

Cullen Dixon, a plant sciences major, helped to perform research to create a biofungicide from sorghum compounds.
April 27, 2017

Cullen Dixon, a plant sciences major, participates in a lab that tests the effectiveness of secondary metabolite compounds produced by sorghum as potential biopesticides in combating foliar diseases of Zea mays, or corn.

Aarushi Rana, an economics major with a minor in mushroom science and technology, prepares a log with spawn to produce shiitake mushrooms. Rana plans to take what she has learned home to Mumbai, India, where she will teach women about how to produce mushrooms.
April 17, 2017

Rana, an economics major, is minoring in mushroom science and technology, and plans to use what she has learned to improve living conditions for people in her home city of Mumbai, India.

Kasie Kerr is the show manager for the Little International Livestock Exposition held at the Snider Ag Arena. 
April 5, 2017

The Little International Livestock Exposition, commonly dubbed “Little I,” has been a staple of the Penn State agricultural community for many decades. And this year, senior animal science major Kasie Kerr is running the show.

Brandon Everett, Hayli Randolph, Denver Greenawalt, Kurtis Miller and Cody Harpster offer free breakfast to everyone in the College of Agricultural Sciences.
March 28, 2017

The Students for Cultivating Change provides a safe, inclusive network for students interested in agricultural sciences who are in the LGBTQ community. Focusing efforts in education, community, and increasing awareness, they strive to promote inclusion and visibility for LGBTQ individuals within the College of Agricultural Sciences and larger Penn State community.

ERM major Francesca Ramacciotti at the Poas Volcano — just one place she was able to visit during her study abroad programs.
March 27, 2017

The senior environmental resource management major traveled to both New Zealand and Costa Rica as part of two separate embedded courses. She was first introduced to these study-abroad opportunities through her major’s coursework.

Sara Getson, shown here working in a greenhouse, chose to abandon her math major and explore her passions for mycology and plant pathology. The fifth-year senior is now double-majoring in plant sciences and French and francophone studies, and triple-minoring in plant pathology, entomology and mushroom science and technology.      
February 16, 2017

Sara Getson came to Penn State and developed an unexpected academic passion — fungi.

Sara Touey, a Community, Environment, and Development major, studied urban farming -- a subject that’s relatively new to the agricultural world -- during her internship at the Penn State Center in Philadelphia.  
February 15, 2017

“Urban agriculture” isn’t a well-known concept, but Sara Touey plans to change that. Touey, a Community, Environment, and Development major in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences interned at the Penn State Center in Philadelphia, studying urban farming.

Hayly Hoch, left, and Alyssa Gurklis completed a 10-week summer internship with Penn State Extension-Allegheny County in 2015.
January 26, 2017

Although Alyssa Gurkis and Hayly Hoch are both students in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, they didn’t know each other when they embarked on a 10-week food-system internship last summer with Penn State Extension-Allegheny County. Now they’re close friends, roommates, and collaborators on a food-system project of their own.

Biological engineering senior Lauren Oeste has accepted a full-time position at Mondelez, following an insightful internship in summer 2016.
December 12, 2016

Biological engineering senior Lauren Oeste accepted a full-time position at Mondelez after completing a manufacturing internship with the company during summer 2016.

Nettie Baugher, of Adams County, Pennsylvania, worked in the operations department of Monsanto's large corn-breeding facility in Hawaii.
November 15, 2016

Is there a better place for a summer vacation than Hawaii? After spending 12 weeks on the island of Maui interning with Monsanto, Nettie Baugher, a senior plant sciences major, doesn't think so.

Biological engineering senior Tyrel Kling has drawn from experiences growing up on his family farm, to make the most of his Penn State education.
November 14, 2016

Biological engineering senior Tyrel Kling draws from experiences on his family farm to make the most of his Penn State education, which he plans to put to good use in the agricultural machine industry.

Matthew Leise accompanied Cargill nutritionists onto farms where they would evaluate and discuss the agricultural operations. He learned a lot from talking to the farmers and animal nutritionists about how producers collect their milk and protect its quality.
September 29, 2016

The typical procedure for most students applying for a job or internship these days starts by applying online, and then later, they hope, getting an in-person interview. But Matthew Leise was able to short-circuit the process at Ag Career Day — and he was greatly rewarded.

During the internship, Azzara saw concepts he learned in his food science classes applied in  real-world situations. He helped to develop new ice cream flavors that should be in stores in 2017.
September 27, 2016

Set for Oct. 11 at the Bryce Jordan Center, Ag Career Day is an excellent venue for any undergraduate student looking for an internship or full-time job — just ask senior food science major Evan Azzara.