ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — The American Angus Association® continuously works to provide young people with opportunities for learning and success. Through its internship program, the Association allows students to explore their interests while developing the knowledge, skills and network to aid them in pursuing future careers. This summer, interns will join multiple departments and entities of the Association, including Angus Media and Angus Genetics Inc. (AGI).
“We are excited to have a great group of young people joining us this summer and know they will be a tremendous value to the Association,” said Mark McCully, American Angus Association CEO. “Internships are critically important, and we work hard to ensure that our interns will have a worthwhile experience.”
Kacy Bland of Lubbock, Texas, is one of two events and education interns and will assist in the planning and execution of junior shows and leadership events. Bland studies animal science at Texas Tech University and grew up showing steers at the Texas majors and national shows around the country. Upon graduation, Bland intends to continue growing her family’s cattle operation and potentially work for a breed association or major stock show. She said she is eager to learn more about how a national breed association works and what goes on behind the scenes.
“I look forward to getting to know the junior members and working with them through the Association,” Bland said. “I would like to give back to them, like so many people did for me throughout my show career.”
Calah Covey, from Hamill, South Dakota, will also serve as an events and education intern. Covey attends South Dakota State University where she is an agricultural communications major and was a member of the livestock judging team. Covey grew up on her family’s cow-calf operation and has been heavily involved in the Hereford breed specifically, building her cow herd since age six and exhibiting at numerous Junior National Hereford Expos. She said she is excited to learn from the talented staff at the Association about what running a successful junior program entails, as well as positively influence junior members.
“I hope to have an impact on the juniors,” Covey said. “Looking back on my junior career, there were many people in my position now that I looked up to as role models.”
Sungbong Jang is a research assistant with AGI and hails from Ilsan, South Korea. He is currently working to obtain his Ph.D. at the University of Georgia in animal breeding and genetics. As one of two AGI interns, Jang mostly will be focused on data editing and analysis. Being one of the largest beef breeds in the world, he said he feels fortunate to be working with Angus genetics.
“I look forward to not only working on this project, but also better understanding the Angus breeding system as a whole,” Jang said. “I hope to work in the academic field to contribute to the livestock industry, and this internship will be helpful in allowing me to do so.”
Muhammad Yasir Nawaz is also a research assistant with AGI and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in genetics and genome science at Michigan State University. Coming from a small dairy farm in Pakistan, Nawaz said he is fascinated by the functions of the Angus beef industry and its data. He is eager to learn from the large amount of data resources and expertise at AGI.
“I am looking forward to learning about beef cattle breeding and genetics and growing my professional network,” Nawaz said. “I want to one day contribute to the genomic improvement of livestock, so this experience is very valuable.”
Madi Baughman joins the team at Angus Media as an editorial intern. Baughman is from Lone Grove, Oklahoma, and currently studies agricultural communications and animal science at Oklahoma State University. Baughman has a passion for sharing the stories of producers and loves livestock photography. Although she didn’t grow up on a farm, she comes from generations of livestock producers and grew up both showing swine and being involved in FFA.
“I am looking forward to learning more about the beef cattle industry through the eyes of a breed association, especially one as prestigious as Angus,” Baughman said. “My goals are to connect and tell the stories of Angus producers from various walks of life and inform them of new opportunities and best practices on their operations.”
Peyton Schmitt, an agricultural communications student at Iowa State University, joins the Association as the communications intern. Growing up in southeast Iowa, Schmitt began showing Hereford cattle at age six and was involved in the National Junior Hereford Association. Schmitt also served as a state FFA officer for the Iowa FFA Association, and has developed a passion for communicating with others about the livestock industry. She said she is eager to serve Angus producers and exhibitors in sharing their stories through this opportunity.
“I hope to use my creativity and love for the industry to deliver meaningful messages both for and about the Angus family,” Schmitt said. “I feel fortunate to have this opportunity to learn from talented mentors while working for this well-established and highly respected Association.”
— Peyton Schmitt, Angus Communications
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