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Student Profile: Bella Monroe

Transfer Quickly Makes a Home in AgCom

By Jack Garner

When she’s not in class, you would expect to see Bella Monroe, a junior from Brookville, Indiana, joking around at club meetings and sparking lively conversation with her fellow agricultural communication majors.

Monroe has the confidence of a graduating four-year senior, but she’s only been on campus for a little more than a year after transferring.

“I just feel like I am at home at Purdue. It’s so easy for me to branch out and build relationships with the people here,” Monroe said.

Photo of Bella Monroe Taking a course in digital storytelling, which emphasizes video production, is a good fit for Bella Monroe, who would like to have a career in broadcasting. Photo of Jack Garner

Monroe devotes much of her out-of-class time to student organizations like Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT), where she was elected president of the club just shortly after joining. In this role, she helps build camaraderie among the members and helps prepare them to be future leaders in the industry.

Monroe also serves the department as an ASEC Ambassador and student mentor. The Ambassadors help recruit new students to the department’s majors by giving campus tours and through other outreach. In this role, Monroe said she hopes to make ASEC just as welcoming for other new and prospective students as it was for her after transferring.

Monroe says the welcomeness she received upon arriving to Purdue made her comfortable immediately and prompted her to get involved. It never felt like a burden for her to add these service opportunities to her schedule.

“I actually knew a couple people before coming to Purdue, and I was able to talk with them and be in classes with them,” Monroe said. “The more I hung out with them, the more friends I made. So, I was able to make plenty of new friends and then join some clubs and activities.”

The welcoming atmosphere extends to the College of Agriculture, Monroe said. After growing up on a family farm and participating in 4-H, Monroe’s comfort with the people in agriculture made for a seamless fit.

“I’m a homebody type of person and being around the agriculture community makes me feel more and more at home,” she said. “That’s what I really love about the people and community at Purdue.”

Not only has the agricultural communication major been a spectacular fit for Monroe culturally, but it has also served her well in academic ventures. She said she has enjoyed taking classes in the major relating to broadcasting, a career she has her eyes set on.

When Monroe was thinking about transferring to Purdue, she was not completely sold on the idea of being an agriculture student. While she always had an affinity for agriculture, she was not sure where her career objectives fit in. Monroe had been studying communications at Miami University in Ohio. Monroe said she was (and remains) passionate about reporting and broadcast communication. However, the ability to combine agriculture and communication into one field of study piqued her interest.

“I wanted a little bit of both,” Monroe said. “I had seen that Purdue had the agricultural communication major, and that’s when it hit me: this is going to be perfect for me!”

Thanks to the specificity of the agricultural communication major, Monroe has been able to pair her ag passion with her love for broadcast work, she’s even getting a head start on her career with an internship for Hoosier Ag Today, a media organization that covers agriculture in Indiana. She fills a key role on their reporting team.

“They don’t have any reporters in southern Indiana, so they want me to cover as much as I can down south,” said Monroe.

After seeing so many doors open in West Lafayette, Monroe said her decision to transfer to Purdue Agricultural Communication was one of her smartest choices she ever made.

“Everything was so easy for me because I just felt so accepted and at home. The culture is amazing, and I am so glad I came to Purdue,” Monroe said.

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