Sabrina Portner

Sabrina Portner

I am honored to be chosen for the Targeting Excellence Scholarship. The Targeting Excellence’s support of young scholars like myself is greatly appreciated. Your aid in funding my education will help me to achieve my dream of giving back to the dairy industry that has made me who I am today. Organizations like the Targeting Excellence give me energy and inspiration to use the gifts I have received to assist in the advancement of those in third world countries and to help those in need. I greatly appreciate the support and selflessness your organization provides to the next generation of agriculturalists.

Hometown: Sleepy Eye, MN

School: Iowa State University

Major / Species: Dairy Science and International Agriculture

Career Goals: The dairy community is comprised of the most dedicated, determined and enthusiastic people I know. Growing up on a dairy cattle farm being surrounded by such people made it apparent that this industry is where I want to build a career. Owning and running a successful dairy farm stands as one of the greatest commitments a person can make. The remarkable dairy animal requires virtually 24/7 care. I have watched so many individuals in the dairy community willingly give up the free time they could have with any other job to dairy farm. There is something special about this industry and the people within it. Therefore, I am striving to bring invaluable skills and knowledge to the dairy community and help feed the world by earning a masters or doctorate degree in dairy nutrition. After graduation, I plan to seek employment with a global animal nutrition company. The global aspect of the company is key for me as my dreams include working with developing countries to improve the agriculture practices of the families who struggle with food insecurity. I specifically wish to develop affordable and effective diets for their livestock to increase the milk production of the animals which will allow individuals to spend less of their income on food. Personally, I desire to become a globally conscious, servant-hearted individual first by studying abroad as I have in New Zealand, then by embarking on mission trips and finally by working in a third-world country possibly through the Agri-Corps. Over time I have realized that nothing brings me quite as much joy as serving others. I find I am most fulfilled by focusing on others through my service activities. I strive to embody my faith’s teachings of selflessness throughout every aspect of my life. No matter my situation or calling in life, I have something to be grateful for and that thankfulness belongs to God. My measurement of success has changed from how much money I earn to how well I follow my calling to serve others in any way I can. I no longer simply desire to be a ruminant nutritionist, but I aim to become a nutritionist who works with individuals to better their livelihood. After gaining knowledge and experience in the nutrition industry for 10 years, I hope to invest in my home farm. I will focus on increasing efficiency, productivity, sustainability, and working to further educate the public about agriculture. To increase agriculture knowledge, I plan to invite a greater number of various groups to tour our farm. This will be the first step in reaching an end goal of creating a visitor and educational center for our farm. My immediate plan of working in third-world countries will help to expand the dairy industry on a global scale as well as create a larger consumer base for nutrient-rich dairy foods. My long-term goal will work to create a more positive image of the dairy community for the public.