Small town, first generation student embraced every opportunity and learned from failures.
Name: Courtney Rodkey
Hometown: Rossville, IN
Major & Concentration: Agricultural Economics; Commodity Marketing Concentration
Why did you come to Purdue: Deciding to go to Purdue was a no-brainer for me. Although I’m a first generation student, ten of my cousins have gone to Purdue, so we are definitely a Boilermaker family! Growing up with Purdue practically in my backyard made me oblivious to the excellent programs, outstanding facilities, affordable tuition, and unique experiences this school offers. However, as I started applying to colleges, I realized how world-renowned Purdue Agriculture is, and what a privilege it would be to learn from some of the best, and be a part of the Boilermaker tradition.
Favorite Purdue tradition: It’s hard to pick just one! Sledding on Slayter Hill, Breakfast Club, and screaming, “IU sucks!” at every kickoff are at the top of my list.
Top three influences at Purdue:
- Barry Delks for guiding me academically, professionally, and spiritually.
- Ag Econ faculty, advisors, staff, and students for challenging me in and out of the classroom.
- My sisters in Chi Omega for broadening my views and providing a strong support system 24/7.
Top five memories of your time at Purdue:
- Rushing the field after beating #3 Michigan State my junior year.
- 2019 Bid Day my freshman year, and running home!
- Walking into class and being able to see smiling faces for the first time after the mask mandate was lifted.
- The 2022 Ag Council Moonlight Pancake Breakfast. Getting to see so many people enjoying an event we worked so hard to plan and host was so rewarding!
- Singing in the “7th Inning Stretch” with the whole lecture hall during Dr. DeBoer’s AgEc 217 power hour almost every week.
Places you have been as a Purdue student:
- Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Texas for my internship with LG Seeds.
- Pennsylvania, Iowa, New York, Maine, Maryland, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Connecticut, and New Hampshire for my internship with Corteva Agriscience.
Favorite club/organization: Unhurried Club
Favorite Student-led event/initiative: Ag Council’s Moonlight Pancake Breakfast
Favorite Purdue event: Purdue Homecoming
Favorite Social Activity: Football and basketball games, and nights at Harry’s with good company!
Favorite place to study: Hick’s Library or Chi Omega room 24
Favorite spot on campus: Loeb fountain by the Recitation Building or Mackey Arena
Favorite thing about CoA: The impact the College of Ag has on campus! We only make up 7% of the student body, but I believe that we have the largest presence on campus. Between Ag Week, Ag Council events, and the extreme involvement of CoA students in university-wide organizations, the footprint we leave can be seen everywhere!
Favorite thing about your major: I love how many free electives are available in Ag Econ. I’ve been able to take classes in many different departments and colleges.
Favorite class: ANSC 245
Favorite professor: Dr. Foster
Coolest project: My coolest projects have been through my internships. Between completing a Customer Data Analysis Project for Co-Alliance Cooperative, surveying dealers for LG Seeds, and working on Fungicide Spray Timing Trials for Corteva Agriscience, I’ve had a wide array of interesting, valuable projects!
Three biggest accomplishments:
- Serving as the 2022 President of Purdue Agricultural Council
- Receiving the Mauri and June Williamson Ag Ambassador Scholarship for being one of the top Ag Ambassador’s my Junior Year
- Graduating college completely debt free! (I thank God for all of the opportunities and financial blessings I have received over the years.)
Things on your resume not listed above:
- President of Unhurried Club
- Grain Merchandising Intern at Co-Alliance Cooperative
- Sales and Agronomy Intern at LG Seeds
- Crop Protection Commercial Sales Intern at Corteva Agriscience
- Presenter at the 2021 Indiana Small Farm Conference
- Intro to Agricultural Economics Mentor (2x)
- 2020 Midwest Women in Agriculture Conference attendee
- CoA Office of Academic Programs Student Assistant
Accepted employment: I accepted a position as an Associate Territory Manager at Corteva Agriscience.
Advice for underclassman: Take advantage of every opportunity given to you, but know when you’re spreading yourself too thin. We weren’t made to be going through life at a full sprint, so learn how to find that balance.
Biggest takeaway from Purdue: I quickly became a little fish in a big pond once I became a student at Purdue, but this taught me failing is okay as long as you learn from it and keep trying. I can put as many plans in place as I want, but I’ll never know when a global pandemic is going to come and change everything. Proverbs 16:9 says, “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”