josh bailey

Boilermaker Transfers to Purdue Without Visiting Campus, What Happens Next is Shocking

Josh Bailey 

Hometown: Williamson, NY 

Major & Concentration: Agricultural Economics, Applied Economics 

Minors or Certificates: Data Driven Agriculture & Horticulture 

Why did you come to Purdue: My journey to Purdue was… a bit different. I first started my college education at a small state school in Upstate NY when Covid hit and everything was moved online. I’d been considering transferring to a larger school, but this became more real as I approached graduation in December of 2020 for my associate degree in Agricultural Business & Management. As I was considering certain options and applying to various schools, I reflected on everything I knew about each school, and Purdue easily stood out. A high school project on soaring college tuition costs had been my first introduction to Purdue because of its innovative tuition freeze policy. Then, I’d been able to meet some Purdue students at an AFA conference and learn more about the academic environment and overall direction of the university, not to mention the incredible school spirit. Without ever having visited the campus, I chose Purdue. I started as a Boilermaker online during the Spring 2021 semester, moved to campus for a summer program in May 2021, and ever since then… Hail Purdue! 

Favorite Purdue tradition: The Boilermaker Special 

Top three influences at Purdue: Dr. Larry DeBoer and now-Dr. Ahmad Wahdat for being my introduction to agricultural economics at Purdue, and the idea that small steps lead to giant leaps! 

Top five memories of your time at Purdue

  1. Vibing with everyone in the REEU Digital Ag 2021 summer program 
  2. Boiler Gold Rush 2021 
  3. Rushing the football field after beating Michigan State 
  4. Everything French Club 
  5. Rocket launches at the Purdue Dairy Farm and out of state 


Places you have been as a Purdue student:  

  • AFA Leadership Conference 2021 - Kansas City, MO 
  • AFA Technology Institute 2022 - New Orleans, LA 
  • AgAID Institute/ Internship 2022 - Walla Walla, WA 


Favorite club/organization

  • Purdue Interplanetary and Space Agriculture/ERBSS 
  • French Club 
  • Purdue Space Program High Altitude 

Favorite Student-led event/initiative: Boiler Gold Rush 

Favorite Purdue event: Football games 


Favorite Social Activity:  French Club events, pickup soccer, intramurals 

Favorite place to study: Lavazzza (with hot chocolate!) 

Favorite spot on campus: Anywhere! 

Favorite thing about CoA: The combination of hard sciences and social sciences, all focused on application, along with the openness to new ideas and collaborations. 

Favorite thing about your major: Societies and economies can only progress and move forward once they’ve established a strong agricultural base. I see agricultural economics as an understanding of this base of society and how it influences our modern world at a macro level, sort of at a foundation level before all else. 

Favorite class: International Development Economics, Collaborative Leadership, Applied Econometrics, Space Biology & Medicine 

Favorite professor: Dr. Marshall Porterfield, Dr. Kajal Gulati, Dr. Nicole Widmar, Dr. Dennis Buckmaster, Dr. Ken Foster 

Coolest project: NASA Plant the Moon/Plant Mars Challenge Spring 2022: Effects of Aeration on Soybean Plant Growth in Lunar and Martian Regolith  


Three biggest accomplishments:  

  1. NASA Plant the Moon/Plant Mars Challenge - receiving Best in Show at the undergraduate level for Experimental Design in recognition of the work our team did 
  2. Forming a World Cup soccer tournament hosted by French Club and bringing together a total of 7 cultural clubs 
  3. Being inducted into Phi Kappa Phi

Things on your resume not listed above: I’m originally from an apple farm and all of my agtech internships have been focused in the fruit/horticultural industry. 

Where do you want to end up: Following my passions, wherever they go. 

Advice for underclassmen: Don’t be afraid to explore your interests or try new things, even if they’re outside your major or department. There is so much opportunity at Purdue, and it’s there for anyone willing to step out of the box. Take the first small step, it’ll lead to giant leaps! 

Biggest takeaway from Purdue: The future is multidisciplinary.