Ag Journeys

“There’s a magic at Penn State.”

Caroline Haga

Hometown: Dallas, TX

Major: Animal Science

Minor: Equine Science

Research: Immunoglobulin levels in horse milk

Good at: Philanthropy, research, horse riding, horse whispering, horse singing, travelling way, way outside her comfort zone, laughing, caring, buckling down and getting it done, following her heart

“20’s the charm.”

“I applied to 19 schools all around the world. My godbrother went here and played for the lacrosse team, and he said, “You should just apply, you might really like it.”

"OK, let’s toss in another and make it 20. I applied, got in, and was invited to For the Glory weekend. I fell in love.”

“But what if they don’t like me?”

“I grew up in the South, raised by two southern parents. Coming up here I thought, are these people going to be Yankees? What if they’re not nice?”

“But when my mom and I were here visiting, walking around campus, I’d actually stop students and ask questions. Everyone was great.”

Research. It can be fun.

“We are total nerds.”

This summer Caroline is working with her adviser, Ann Macrina, in her research lab. They’re looking at the change in immunoglobulin levels in horse milk over time in parturition and gestation.

And having a blast.

“It’s really fun to spend time with her. I love the lab work. We just sit there and laugh at each other as we’re pipetting all these samples. Most people think it would be so boring. We think it’s so much fun.”

From student to teaching assistant.

“Professor Edward Mills’s Meat Lab course was awesome. I’m actually going to TA for him in the fall.”

“We have a lot of power as college students.”

As philanthropy chair for her sorority, Phi Sigma Sigma, Caroline has a chance to give back.

“We support organizations like Ronald McDonald House and St. Jude’s. It’s given me a lot of insight into what we can do. People might think, Oh, college students don’t do much. But a lot of us really care about these causes and they mean a lot to us.”

“I wasn’t interested in the corporate world.”

Horses are her business.

“My dad always wanted me to go in to business. But I didn’t want to be behind a desk all day. I want to work in equine reproduction research—that’s my calling. Now my dad has come to see how happy I am here and he’s really proud of me. He sees how hard I work.”

“Now, I have family here.”

The wow factor: We’ve got it covered.

“Whatever school you’re always comparing other schools to, that’s the school for you. In the end, it came down to A&M or Penn State. Something kept calling me to Penn State—it just had that wow factor.”

“Being far from home is hard at times, but now Penn State feels like home. I have made an entire family here. It’s the best decision I’ve made in my entire life.”