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The Benefits of Summer Interns

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We have many ongoing programs at the Noble Research Institute that are so familiar to us that we assume everyone else knows about them. I often wonder how much of our daily activity is known by others. One area that I would like to briefly discuss is a youth/professional education program.

For many years, the Ag Division has hired summer interns to work for approximately three months. These internships are educational experiences but, at the same time, we ask interns to work on special projects that we would be unable to complete without them.

Those internships have been instrumental in the collection and analysis of information on topics such as pond fish surveys, crabgrass literature reviews, enterprise budgets on our demonstration farms, collecting photographs of and identifying plant species for a plant ID book, and collecting vegetable and pecan research information on our demonstration farms among many others.

While those students help us in many ways, these experiences have helped them focus on their future careers. We have worked with students from many universities around the region: Oklahoma State University, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Kansas State University, and Colorado State University.

It's a pleasure to watch these young students arrive and team up with our staff in such a way that we generate much more learning than we would have expected at the beginning of the summer. The close personal and professional relationships that our specialists have established with interns is very similar to those that we develop with cooperators in our service area. It is a great example of a mutually beneficial relationship.

If you know of any student that would be interested in an excellent professional learning experience, please have them contact us. We are always seeking the best possible student to put in these positions and have often had referrals from our newsletter subscribers.

This is one little known but very important way that we can serve the agricultural professions while accomplishing special tasks and projects that we would not be able to do otherwise. The internship program is vital so we can continue to provide the best advice and education possible to you our cooperator.