July 2023 Update
The past few weeks of my internship at NCGA have been some of the busiest but also some of the most exciting. The second week of July I had the privilege of attending the CommonGround video shoot at farms in Texas and Kansas. We flew out of St. Louis to Amarillo, Texas from which we drove to a farm in the Texas panhandle. It was so great to connect with women in ag and learn about each farm and how they contribute to CommonGround as an organization. The salsa and guacamole that was made at the Spurlock family farm was amazing. We all left sufficiently satisfied. From there we drove another farm in the Texas panhandle. It was interesting to hear from Cari Beauchamp about how all the rain Texas has been receiving is impacting day to day operations at her farm.
After this video shoot, we made our way to Kansas for a stop at Katie Caruthers’ farm. It was interesting to hear about the shop that Katie runs as the Caruthers family has turned to alternative industries in addition to ag for income. It was also cool to see how she packages meat and other goods to be sent around the U.S. From there we made our way to the Hildebrand Dairy Farm to experience what dairy farming is like. The ice cream they make from their milk was amazing and being able to see the milking process up close was an invaluable experience. It was nice to be able to experience this as my family are not dairy farmers. Our last stop was at Wrenn Pachenco’s farm in Alma, Kan. Her store was also cool to look at, but the coolest part was going out to the pasture and seeing them check cattle on their horses. The video shots turned out cool and seeing the family ride together was sweet.
Overall, the CommonGround video shoot was an awesome experience and learning some video techniques from the videographer, Adnan, was invaluable. His video skills are amazing, and I can’t wait to see how the videos turn out. I think that these videos will be a great marketing tool for CommonGround to use in the future.
48 hours after returning from the CommonGround video shoot I hopped on a plane to Washington, D.C. for the 2023 July Corn Congress. Overall, I thought Corn Congress was a cool experience. I enjoyed connecting with growers from all over the country and sitting in on the Member and Consumer Engagement Action Team meetings. It was interesting to learn more about what the action teams do and all the pieces of the Farm Bill. After learning more about these things, it was then cool to apply what I learned on Capitol Hill when lobbying with senators. Then, seeing Corn Congress commence on Thursday was interesting. I have been in similar business meetings, but it was cool to see how NCGA conducted business and it was cool to witness how voting was done by the delegate body. Overall, this week was eye-opening and being able to advocate on Capitol Hill on behalf of corn growers gave me new hope for Farm Bill passage. I really enjoyed my time at Corn Congress and am grateful for the opportunity to attend.
With just two weeks left in my internship I am excited to finish strong and continue to make the most of the time I have left at NCGA.