AMES, Iowa — The opportunity to serve Iowa’s pork industry by working with Iowa Pork Industry Center was one Kristin Olsen just couldn’t pass up. The new extension program specialist at the Iowa Pork Industry Center said she’s passionate about pork production in general, and her recent experiences as both an undergraduate and graduate student at Iowa State University provided great background for her new role that began earlier this month.
“I have been a student in the animal science department since fall 2013 and have worked in labs and offices for the past two years,” Olsen said. “I’ve gotten to know many of the professors and students in the department and am looking forward to seeing many familiar faces as I begin my new role at Iowa State.”
She recently finished her master’s degree in swine nutrition under John Patience at Iowa State and said that experience provided a wealth of learning about the U.S. swine industry.
“I was able to work with people from many different areas of the industry, including visiting several commercial farms and feed mills,” she said. “I also was able to conduct a research project off-campus with an industry collaborator and had a short internship with Hanor.”
The exposure to the swine industry during her academic career provided unique opportunities for better understanding practical implications of implementing new concepts and ideas in pork production practices. Olsen said those experiences also taught her the importance of being able to convey complex information in ways that are understandable to a wide array of audiences.
“I also have experience writing and speaking for both industry and academic audiences, which I really enjoy and look forward to using in my role with IPIC,” she said. “I think my experiences have given me a unique set of skills that will serve IPIC and the pork industry well.”
Part of her role will include coordinating the annual Iowa Swine Day event. She’ll also have the opportunity to work on a variety of informational materials and collaborate on specific research projects to help answer important questions facing pork producers.
“I look forward to making Iowa Swine Day even more impactful not only for Iowa’s producers, but for producers across the U.S.,” she said. “I am excited to work with faculty and staff in many different areas of production in addition to nutrition. I also love learning and want to continue developing my skills and my knowledge of the swine industry as I work in this role.”
Olsen can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 712-249-5731.
— Kristin Olsen and Sherry Hoyer, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
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