I grew up on a dairy farm in Sigel, IL, just north of Effingham. After I graduated high school, I attended the University of Missouri in Columbia where I graduated with a BS in Animal Science and a minor in Plant Science in December of 2016. Originally, I intended on also attending veterinary school; however, at the end of my sophomore year, I decided that vet school was not the right path for me. During my undergraduate years, I had many wonderful opportunities. I worked at the university’s dairy farm for two and a half years. It was there that I first started breeding cows and learning even more than I had at home about the industry. I also interned at a grazing dairy in southern Missouri. I was responsible for the start-up and operation of the dairy’s on-farm mastitis culture lab, which they continue to use today.
After I decided I no longer wanted to attend vet school, I took an internship with Purina in a feed sales position at Top Ag Cooperative in Trenton, IL. I had the amazing opportunity to learn from some of the sales personnel and ride with dairy and beef nutrition specialists. For three years, I participated and competed in Dairy Challenge on the University of Missouri team. I learned a tremendous amount not only from the on-farm experiences, but also the people I had the chance to work with. It is after these collective experiences that I decided to pursue a MS in Dairy Nutrition and Management under the direction of Dr. Phil Cardoso. Upon completion, I hope to pursue a career in dairy consulting before returning to the family dairy.