Students: Be flexible and willing to learn
By Krista Swanson
August 29, 2018

Although I never changed my selected degree in crop sciences as an undergrad, my interests and career plans were influenced as I learned more through classes, internship experiences, and staff and faculty mentors. As a student in ACES, I had many great opportunities to evolve, grow, and seek direction on how I could combine my strengths and interests.

During my last year as an undergraduate, I was feeling I was at a crossroads and wasn’t sure which path forward to take. A conversation with an advisor in ACES Career Services led me to a graduate program in ACE, where I quickly found a new realm where I could apply my passion for agriculture, my interest in crop agronomics, and my math skills.

After graduate school I spent one year working in agriculture tax and accounting and more than six years evaluating loan portfolio risk for an agriculture lender. Today, I have the unique opportunity of working with some of the same people I had as professors and mentors as a graduate student. While I have greatly appreciated every step of my career to date, my current role consistently peaks my interest while utilizing my strengths and my educational background.

My biggest piece of advice for current students is be flexible and willing to learn. Take time to evaluate your career plans if you begin to feel drawn towards something new. As a student in ACES you have many opportunities, let those shape your interests and your career plans.