sydney wheeler sydney wheeler

Internship with Greene Crop Provides AgEcon Junior Opportunity to Explore Career Interest

AgEcon Junior Sydney Wheeler (Sales & Marketing; Columbus, Indiana) wanted to gain more experience in the agronomy field while also using her summer in a productive manner that would allow her to gain that knowledge. Keeping these goals in mind, Sydney utilized her resources on campus to begin her search, ultimately choosing an internship position with Greene Crop in Crop Scouting. 

“I found this internship application in an email from Andy Oppy and liked that it was close to my hometown. I wanted to stay close to home and get experience in the agronomy field, so I applied and interviewed during the online College of Agriculture Career Fair. What I liked most about the internship program was that I would be communicating directly with farmers. I wanted to get more experience interacting with farmers and ag retailers, so it sparked my interest. I also would have to get my Remote Pilot license to use the drone, so that was also an exciting opportunity and investment in my future career. Lastly, I liked the fact that it was a small office with only seven total employees, so I knew going in that I would get more one-on-one attention and guidance.” 

As an intern, Sydney’s main responsibilities consist of walking through corn and soybean fields to look for any issues as well as updating the farmer on growth stages for chemical and fertilizer applications. Additionally, Sydney will also fly a drone above the fields to get an overall view of the stand and if there are any large areas of concern. 

Throughout her experience, Sydney has gained a deeper interest in crop science than she had previously. Given her interests, Sydney is now considering more opportunities in this field as a future career. “It has also helped me decide which minor to pick up for the remainder of my college career. I have loved the attention and experience I have gotten from this internship already, and I have gotten to see all sides of the industry.” 

When asked to share one valuable take-away from this experience, Sydney explains, “always be curious and strive to learn more. It is humbling to come to a problem or question that you do not have an answer to, and it forces you to learn more and to be genuinely curious about things going on around you. I was not knowledgeable about crop science when I started this summer, but I have been able to have plenty of chances to learn something new every day.” 

As an intern, Sydney has had the opportunity to engage in new experiences. Her favorite memory so far would be when the office took a trip to the soil testing lab, which was about 2 hours away. On the way back they got ice cream, talked about random things, and really began building connections with her employer and coworkers.  

When asked to share a piece of advice for students seeking an internship, Sydney offered, “sit down and think about what internship experience you want and what you need to have to achieve your career goals. Having a plan makes it easier to search for an internship and it will allow you to focus more on your needs while also helping to pour more energy into finding experiences that you actually care about doing.”