Thank you so much to the Targeting Excellence Sponsors, Board, and Committees for their work in making this and awards for many others possible. Financial stability in college is a difficult task to manage, but because of your generosity I am able to concentrate on what is important for me: continuing my education in agriculture. Your assistance has allowed me to be one step closer to my goal and has inspired me to help others by giving back to the community. I hope one day I will be able to help other students achieve their educational and professional goals just as you have helped me.
My involvement in my family’s dairy farm, Synergy Dairy, is the number one experience which has lead me to my current career aspirations. From a very young age, I can remember feeding baby calves, helping wash show cows, and sitting alongside my aunt as she nursed a sick cow back to health. It is moments like these over the course of my life which have made it clear that I could never work in an industry other than dairy. While my interests and knowledge of the industry have certainly evolved since I was a rubber booted toddler carrying a calf bottle which was just as tall as I was, my enthusiasm and passion for the industry has only grown. I am eternally grateful for the involvement I have had in this industry from a young age. As I began to consider colleges early in my high school career, I hoped to become the third generation in my family to become a Wisconsin Badger. Both my family’s history with the university and my experiences on the farm lead me to the University of Wisconsin – Madison to seek degrees in Dairy Science and Agricultural Business Management.
Throughout my UW Madison career I have been blessed to have many different educational experiences both inside and outside of the classroom. I have had many educational opportunities which I have benefited greatly from including courses in lactation physiology, ruminant nutrition, agricultural business management, and many more. These classes have helped me gain a great amount of knowledge which I will take into my future career. Overall, I think my internship experiences have had the biggest impact on my evolving career goals; I am currently working at my third college internship and have learned a great deal from these experiences. My primary focus in my three internships has been agricultural support and education through UW Extension, newborn calf care and nutrition at Hall’s Calf Ranch, and agriculture related data management at Filament Marketing. While all three of my experiences have been infinitely different, I have found no matter what area I have work in, I keep coming back to an idea that has lingered in my head for as long as I can remember: I am always happiest when you can find me among dairy cattle.
Generally, my ultimate career goal is to enjoy going to work every single day. Obviously this could apply to a multitude of careers, but as I just mentioned for me this will involve dairy cattle. Through industry experience and research I have decided that a career in herd management or calf management will be best for me. I think either of these career paths will allow me to make a big impact in the lives of many animals while utilizing the knowledge I have gained at this university in both dairy science and agricultural business management. Most importantly, it will allow me to spend my days in the barn, where I most enjoy my time.