Intern Update: Supporting a Future for Agriculture

08-24-2015 in Communications Internship

By Haley Banwart, CSIF Communications Intern

At the beginning of summer I wrote an article highlighting the celebration of June as National Turkey Month. At the end of summer I was serving up smoked turkey legs, turkey tenderloins and griddle sticks at the Iowa State Fair. In more ways than one, my internship experience has come full circle.

My internship with the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers has been very rewarding and full of valuable learning moments. Thanks to my experiences and projects both at the office and out on Iowa farms, there are many lessons I will take with me as I enter my senior year at Iowa State University.

“Internship Takeaways”:

1. Like farmers, communications professionals wear many hats.

Throughout my internship, I enjoyed diving into a variety of communication projects such as writing articles and social media content, recording video testimonials and practicing personal communications skills, both on the phone and during one-on-one interviews. I also had the opportunity to sharpen my verbal communication skills through live and recorded radio interviews.

2.Tradition is not always replaced by technology.

Being exposed to the diversity of Iowa’s livestock industry allowed me to experience firsthand how farmers are utilizing the latest and greatest technology to raise their animals responsibly and successfully. Although technology has allowed farmers to reduce labor and increase efficiency, they continue to manage their operations with the same pride and passion of former generations.

3.The agriculture community is a small world after all.

I have been involved in agriculture all of my life thanks to my farm background, education and previous work experiences, but my internship with the Coalition allowed me to gain a better understanding of the ag network. I built new relationships with farmers from across the state as well as industry leaders who work hard to provide services and solutions. I look forward to working alongside these individuals as I approach my professional career.

Reflecting on my summer, there are several reasons why I love interning with the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers. First and foremost, I work with a terrific team who continues to mentor and inspire me. Secondly, I feel I am fulfilling my duty to support the future of agriculture as a member of the next generation. Ultimately, this has allowed me to work toward a personal career goal of giving back to Iowa’s farm families and rural communities.

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