Christina Ilowiecki ’13June 21, 2016
Angelina Peone ’16June 21, 2016
Alumni Spotlight: Eileen Jensen
Bachelor of Technology in Agricultural Business Management, Class of ‘06
Director of Promotion & Outreach for the New York Animal Agriculture Coalition
Where You'll Find Her Now
I am currently the Director of Promotion & Outreach for the New York Animal Agriculture Coalition (NYAAC). Previously, I have been a Monsanto Brand Ambassador for Momentum Worldwide, an Account Executive for Osborn Barr, and a Senior Account Executive for Bader Rutter.
NYAAC’s mission is to enhance the public’s understanding of and appreciation for animal agriculture and modern farm practices. My responsibilities include advocating and educating general consumers about agriculture and assisting NYS farmers in telling their story to promote American agriculture. We chronicle NYS agriculture through social media, farm tours and the Dairy Cow Birthing Center at the NYS Fair.
My success in this role as the Director of Promotion & Outreach would not have been possible without the variety of classes I took at SUNY Cobleskill. I enjoyed the breadth and depth of the agricultural business degree because it allowed me to explore a variety of career paths and interests. The field studies trips at SUNY Cobleskill that I participated in—the East Coast trip, 2004, the Midwest trip in 2005, and Germany in 2006—opened my eyes to agriculture all over the world which helped me step out of my comfort zone. I eventually moved to the Midwest and worked there for 7 years.
Prior to my time at SUNY Cobleskill, my thought of education and marketing was very narrow. But, because of my professors, classes, classmates, and experience, I was able to expand it and realized that opportunities to explore education and marketing are all around. You just have to jump at every experience you possibly can.
SUNY Cobleskill gave me the chance to open my eyes to unique experiences. To this day, my favorite class was Farm Appraisal with Doc Shear because we were on the farm, applying exactly what we were learning to real life scenarios. My advisor, Tim Moore, helped guide me towards a successful career by allowing me to try new things, gain real-world experience, and, most importantly, listening to what I wanted in life. As a true mentor, Tim helped me find my path and I have him to thank for my success in the agriculture industry.
As far as clubs, PAS (Post-Secondary Agricultural Students) was the backbone for my success in leadership development and connecting my education to the industry. Terry & Lois Hughes and Matt Hibbard were, and still are, true leaders in my eyes; they helped me realize and utilize my true talents, guided me towards success, pushed me because they knew I could handle it, and allowed me to succeed.
The friends I met at SUNY Cobleskill are some of the greatest friends I have. It was at SUNY Cobleskill where I met my best friends because of the classes we shared and common interests. Agriculture brought us together but it’s the bonds made at SUNY Cobleskill that have kept us together over the years.
"interests. Agriculture brought us together but it’s the bonds made at SUNY Cobleskill that have kept us together over the years."
One of my most significant achievements would have to be landing my current position with NYAAC. I was the top choice out of 80 applicants and I truly believe it’s because of the experience I had, the opportunities I pursued, and the leadership that I have gained over the years – all stemming from my time at SUNY Cobleskill.
Students, Take Note
College is what you make it out to be. You can choose to study your days and nights away and rarely leave your dorm room or you can choose to find a balance in your life: meet new friends, go visit your roommate’s hometown, and take a class focused on something you never thought you’d be interested in. You’ll be surprised at the people you meet, the things you learn, and the experiences you can have if you just allow yourself to step out of your comfort zone and get uncomfortable. Life—and college—were not meant to be easy, but they were meant to be memorable.