Find your passion in National Dairy Month
We are reaching the final days of National Dairy Month! Surely, you’ve seen something along the lines of “Enjoy your favorite dairy product, all month long!” or #JuneIsDairyMonth on social media. Each person in our dairy community has their own story, their own path, and reasons why they value our industry. And, the best part of our delicious and wholesome products are the passions behind them.
It’s important to shine a light on the “why” of our industry. Why do you get up every day and do what you do? Why did you get involved in the dairy industry? Why do you seek to serve the dairy community? The answer could be simple, and that is our passion.
Cargill Animal Nutrition’s four dairy interns are especially passionate about the dairy industry and exemplify how everyone has their own dairy story. Grab a glass of milk, sit down, and learn what ignited our summer interns to dive deeper into the dairy industry as they each share their own dairy story.
Grace joins us from Iowa State University where she majors in animal science and global resource systems. This summer, she is in a Dairy Sales role and specifically looking into the manure digestion space within Idaho. She didn’t know her passion for the dairy industry until going to college—but this gives no discount for her love of the dairy cow.
In her first year of college Grace explored the many club opportunities on campus. She says the welcoming students and faculty in the Dairy Science Club made her choice easy to join, and right away she had a network of friends and opportunities. This past year, she served as the Dairy Product Chair and worked on the dairy foods and products side more than she would have ever imagined. Grace also engaged in undergrad research, studying transition cows, which led to an internship opportunity. Through these and more experiences she has continued to develop her passion and says in the future she would like to work with dairy producers to make the most out of their operations.
Favorite dairy breed: Jersey Favorite dairy product: “Ice cream, but cheese is a close second!”
Madison joins us from Penn State University where she majors in animal science. She is also a Dairy Sales Intern and is focusing on rumen digestion research.
Madison grew up on a beef farm in Pennsylvania and down the road her grandparents have a dairy farm where they milk Holsteins, Brown Swiss, and an occasional Jersey. This is what sprouted her passion for the dairy industry and since she has become more involved in her family’s farm (Madison and her brother even started their own show and heifer operation). Also prominent to Madison’s story are experiences within the Junior Holstein Association. Through the association, she participates in dairy bowl, public speaking, and is currently serving as her state’s Junior Holstein Association President.
When starting at Penn State University, Madison quickly emersed herself in the Dairy Science Club and is currently the club’s Membership Chair. She appreciates what this club has to offer her, as well as the chance to meet with others on campus who have an interest in dairy. It’s her involvement and the people she gets to work alongside that drives her passion for the dairy industry.
Favorite dairy breed: Holstein Favorite dairy product: “Ice cream!”
Gaelan joins us from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he majors in dairy science. Through his Dairy Sales role he is working to understand the implementation of Cargill’s MAX™ System and how it changes the analysis of digestible neutral detergent fiber (dNDF).
He might not have grown up directly on a dairy farm, but his family has a dairy operation in Minnesota that was started by his grandpa and has since transitioned over to his uncle. Not to mention, growing up in Wisconsin made it easy to get his hands dirty in the industry. Gaelan says he feels lucky to have gained both dairy production knowledge from his uncle and dairy research knowledge from his dad, a professor. This helped him realize there is so much more to dairy than running a farm.
At school there are many opportunities for him to get involved and he says one of his favorite experiences was working at the World Dairy Expo on behalf of Badger Dairy Club. Gaelan mentions that working on the campus farms and participating in Dairy Challenge set the stage for him and especially his career. He is eager to be a problem solver and provide solutions to dairy farmers through his role this summer and in the future.
Favorite dairy breed: Jersey Favorite dairy product: “Greek yogurt, especially in a smoothie!”
I am joining from Michigan State University where I major in agribusiness management. This summer I will be working as a marketing intern focused on supporting the Dairy Strategic Marketing Team with content development, social media, and sustainability projects. I will also be developing my writing skills, so keep an eye out for more blogs to come!
My passion started on my grandparent’s Registered Holstein farm in Michigan, which is where I spent most of my time. On my ninth birthday, I received my very first calf as a gift. I was finally “show age” and named her Sammy. I give a lot of credit to my grandparent’s and my first calf for making it almost effortless to develop a passion for dairy farming. My introduction might have been through the show ring growing up, but I also got involved in other activities such as dairy bowl, dairy judging, the Junior Holstein Association, and more.
Attending Michigan State has given me a different perspective on the industry through clubs, courses, and internships – especially my summer at Maddox Dairy in California. Cows have allowed me to travel across the country and even to Europe because of these various activities. It is easy to say that the network I have created is what ignites me to be a part of our industry and the term passion certainly answers my why every day.
Favorite dairy breed: Holstein Favorite dairy product: “All the cheese please!”