Year in school: Sophomore
Major: Bakery science and food science, secondary major in global food systems leadership and minors in business and leadership studies
Hometown: Salina, Kansas
K-State has been a large part of my life because my dad was an alumnus, so I don't think there is one specific memory I have as my first recollection of the university. I will instead tell you of a university memory that forever impacted my life. As a freshman in high school, I attended a 4-H event at the university called Discovery Days. This event allows high school students to take mock classes and learn the same concepts they would in college courses at K-State. I took a workshop on learning how to make pretzels. During this class, I learned that bakery science and food science were majors you could pursue. This experience led me to do a lot of research and realize that K-State is the only university in the country to offer bakery science, which is what I wanted to study. When the time came to enroll in classes for my first year at K-State, I found that my advisor was the man who taught me how to make pretzels and exposed me to the industry and major.
Why did you choose K-State?
K-State is the only university to offer a degree in bakery science. While this was the main factor in my decision to come here, many other things made me realize that K-State was the university for me. When I went on a campus tour during my senior year of high school, I visited the Staley School of Leadership, which I had never heard of. Out of all the other colleges I looked at, none offered leadership studies like K-State offered. Another thing that I only found at K-State was a sense of community and family. All the staff and faculty genuinely want to do anything they can to help you succeed. Every alumnus I have met has had great memories of their time in Manhattan. Another factor that made me interested in K-State was the global food systems leadership secondary major. Even though I did not know much about what the secondary major was, now that I have gone through my first semester, I have realized that I want to work to decrease food insecurity and create food policy.
How are you involved at K-State?
I was involved in Quest Freshman Honorary and have now joined Silver Key Honorary for sophomores. I am an ambassador at the Staley School of Leadership and work on the education committee to organize events with students and people in the Manhattan community. I was selected for the Student Alumni Board and will work with the K-State Alumni Association to organize events for students at the university and for prospective students. Through bakery science, I joined the Bakery Science Club and serve as an officer planning our bi-weekly meetings and attending Ag Council meetings. This last year, I went through the Catalyst Self Development Program and spent this summer doing a monthlong education abroad experience in Orvieto, Italy, for my leadership minor.
What has been your favorite K-State experience?
Being a part of Quest Freshman Honorary helped clarify why I am at this university and what I want to make of my time here. It has introduced me to student government and connected me to many influential people who work with the university. It has gotten me involved in programs on campus like Student Alumni Board and Silver Key Honorary. It has exposed me to students taking the global food systems leadership program, and without meeting those students, I would not have decided to pursue this secondary major. It has helped me meet many students who are passionate about leadership — and now I have many familiar faces on campus. It has even connected me to the Blue Key seniors, who I know I can talk to if I need help, whether academically or professionally.
How does K-State care for Kansans in your hometown community?
In Salina, K-State has a university campus that focuses on degrees in aviation and engineering technology. K-State Research and Extension provides services such as 4-H for youth in the area and programs on agriculture, community, family, food, health and lawn and garden. The point of K-State Research and Extension is to better the lives of the communities it serves. Through this, extension agents work with community members to find solutions to problems residents are facing in Salina.
Why do you want to bring K-State to your community?
As a land-grant university, K-State offers many unique programs and services. Since being at K-State, the faculty, staff and students I have met have worked with me to maximize my time at the university and have given me many opportunities academically and professionally. I think K-State has something special and I want to work with the university to tell the Salina community why. I also believe this initiative will be a chance to receive feedback from the community on how K-State can better serve Salina and its prospective students.