CAFNR Internship Fair showcases opportunities

Rather than waiting for an opportunity to come knocking, students in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) opened the doors to internship possibilities at the CAFNR Career Services Internship Fair, held in Bond Life Sciences Center on Monday, Sept. 22.

During the event, former interns presented information on a diverse and dazzling array of work experiences for major companies, such as Syngenta, Cargill and DuPont-Pioneer. Although internship positions are a stellar addition to a student résumé, the insights of the people behind the paper—the student interns themselves—reflect the actual value of on-the-job experience and training.

Morgan Beach, a junior agricultural economics and public policy major from Pilot Grove, Missouri, took care of business — agribusiness, more specifically — at Smithfield Farmland in Kansas City this past summer. As a human resources intern, Beach spearheaded projects in employee compensation, as well as training and development for the meat packaging company,

“I worked on job descriptions for the company, evaluations for employee success and a pay-grade structure,” Beach said. “Through training and development, I worked on developing e-learning courses and online modules.”

Students seeking an internship experience working at the Capitol rather than managing human capital could consider the Civic Leaders Internship Program. Brooke Jameson, a second-semester graduate student in natural resources from Center, Missouri, capitalized on the opportunity to intern with Senator Brad Lager in Jefferson City.

“We dealt with things from E. coli in the Lake of the Ozarks to alcohol legislation bills,” said Jameson, who emphasized the diversity of public policy and its application to students enrolled in a wide variety of CAFNR degree programs.

Although Jameson is not planning an ultimate career in public policy, she attributes her experiences through the Civic Leaders Internship Program, administered through the university’s Office of Service Learning, as increasing her versatility to employers and improving her knowledge of civic affairs.

Other students used the fair to explore their internship options and employment interests. Yia Yang, a freshman, plant sciences major from Wheaton, Missouri, described his “dream internship” as he perused the offerings at the September 30, 2014 MU internship fair.

“My dream internship would probably have to be with Monsanto, doing laboratory work and DNA or genetic research,” Yang said.

Likewise, Rachel Rozin, a freshman animal science major from Atlanta, Georgia, expressed her interest in trading classroom instruction at Mizzou for hands-on training at a zoo next summer.

“I’m definitely looking for internships in the zoological field,” said Rozin, a Pre-Veterinary Scholar and a former tour guide at the Georgia Aquarium. “I’m really interested in all of the zoos and aquariums represented at the internship fair.”

From agribusiness to zoology, CAFNR students in any field can discover more internship opportunities through resources provided by CAFNR Career Services. Interview coaching, peer career advising and résumé reviews are also available to students looking to market their talents and skills to potential employers.

Nora Faris

About the Author Nora Faris

From the cornfields to Capitol Hill, from the white farmhouses of mid-Missouri to the White House, I am an ardent advocate for American agriculture. President Dwight D. Eisenhower once remarked, “Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil and you’re a thousand miles from the cornfield.” As an agricultural communicator and CAFNR Corner Post staff writer, I look forward to using my pencil (or computer, smartphone, camera and other tools of the journalistic trade) to reveal the challenges and opportunities of the agriculture industry in meaningful ways and bring the cornfield closer to the average consumer.