Walking Beans, Marketing Grain, and Crunching Numbers

The Council for Agricultural Science and Technology has a close association with Iowa State University, and a key aspect is the intern program. Students receive valuable experience (and some monetary benefits) in the areas of agriculture, finance, and communications. CAST benefits by having talented students bring new ideas and enthusiasm to the organization. Collete joined the CAST staff in August.

From Beans to Business, CAST’s New Intern Stays Focused on Her Goals
Collete Haag might be the only sophomore at Iowa State University with a certain archaic skill listed on her resume—Bean Walking 101. From the age of eight, she joined her dad and others to perform the classic weed pulling ritual in soybean fields—a task that has become nearly extinct since Round Up and other herbicides swept in. “I also loved riding the tractor with Dad.  We didn’t have many animals—a few chickens and a peacock that went astray—but I’m happy I grew up on a farm.”
Collete appreciates her farm roots, and an internship at CAST seems to be a smooth way to keep that connection. “I like the ag-related nature of CAST’s mission statement,” she said, “and according to my job description, I’ll be able to get plenty of financial experience.”
Rural living may be in her roots, but Collete has her goals set on some heavy-duty number crunching. She is majoring in accounting, and even though the certification sounds challenging, she is bound and determined to achieve her CPA accreditation. She even used a summer internship to further her progress. “I worked with MaxYield Cooperative, and I was lucky enough to be involved with grain marketing and hedging. Oh yes, an internal audit, too.”
Not everyone would want to spend summer days wrestling with audit figures, but Collete keeps things balanced with her ISU activities. She is the treasurer of the Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity, and she continues her high school sports talents (softball, basketball, and volleyball) by participating in college intramurals. And like many of her fellow students, she spends  weekends supporting Cyclone football and other ISU teams.
Collete is proud to come from a place where the nearest town—Ledyard, Iowa—has a population of 128. “But it still has a bank, an annual tractor pull, and a community fundraising supper that includes a secret recipe for the chicken.” We suspect Collete’s abilities to work with finance and numbers might take her off the farm, but if bean walking ever comes back into fashion, we know where to find a talented worker. CAST staff members welcome her to the organization and look forward to working with her.
by dan gogerty

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