Lauren Corry is a 2017 graduate of the agricultural communication program at Ohio State. Corry, originally from Xenia, Ohio, is now the director of communications for the Ohio Beef Council and Ohio Cattlemen’s Association.
[ACEL]: Hi Lauren! Share with us why you chose to major in agricultural communication at Ohio State?
In elementary school, I was the kid who enjoyed indoor recess because I could mess around in Kid Pix or Microsoft Paint in the computer lab. In high school, like most others, I enjoyed each activity I involved myself within my FFA chapter. Agricultural communication ended up being the perfect balance of utilizing my creative instincts and passion for agriculture.
I chose Ohio State because of family tradition. Both of my siblings and parents attended Ohio State, so becoming a Buckeye was a natural fit and childhood aspiration (…and I’m not entirely sure I had a choice).
How did your education at Ohio State influence your choice of career following your graduation?
Not once did I doubt my decision to major in ag comm. I knew I was in the right place. My internships at Ohio Farm Bureau and Ohio Beef Council/Ohio Cattlemen’s Association confirmed that and started to show me career possibilities that aligned with my coursework. I was lucky enough to be offered a position where I had previously completed an internship and started full time the day after graduation.
Outside of the classroom, how were you involved in campus?
I was active in Saddle & Sirloin, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow and the CFAES Celebration of Students Steering Committee. During my four years on the committee, I gained so much “outside of the classroom” experience. I dabbled in solicitations, video production, logo creation, brand guidelines, ordering print materials and social media management. I also had the opportunity to serve as the AgriNaturalist design editor during our capstone class. These opportunities really set me up for success in understanding many of the responsibilities I would need for my current position – I put together a magazine every few months now and work on similar tasks on a day-to-day basis.
What classes did you enjoy the most while at Ohio State?
Cultural proficiency with Dr. Susie Whittington, photography with Dr. Buck and BBQ science with Dr. Cressman and Dr. England were some of my favorite classes at Ohio STate. My absolute favorite class was cultural proficiency with Dr. Whittington because it encouraged self-awareness and created an atmosphere hospitable for tough, but important, conversations. I also really enjoyed the volunteer opportunities associated with it. The class was a great reminder to be open to many different perspectives on life.
What professor, faculty or staff member had an impact on your education?
Dr. Buck and Dr. Specht were both extremely supportive and helped me refine my communication skills throughout each class. Dr. Trefz and Dr. Flood constantly challenged me to improve and try new experiences from my freshman year on. I am very thankful for each of their influences as they helped me not only during my time as a student, but also have had lasting effects post-graduation.
What is your favorite memory related to your time at Ohio State?
Maybe it was walking through the streets of London while studying abroad. Maybe it was the friendships and connections made during my internships. Maybe it was a trip to a conference with a student org. Whatever it is, I’m forever thankful for the memories made and the path that led me to Ohio State, CFAES and ACEL.
What was your first job following your education at Ohio State?
I am still in my first position after graduation as the director of communications of the Ohio Beef Council and the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association. I have similar responsibilities for both organizations including graphic design, social media management, website updates, photography and press releases.
As of today, what is your favorite career highlight?
It’s fun to look back and see how much has changed in the past year. As of right now my favorite highlight is noticing self-improvement and how I’ve grown since I first started in my position.
What advice would you give to a current student?
Find opportunities to learn outside of the classroom. Take the internship. Find a mentor. Go to the conference. Study abroad. Switch up your learning environment occasionally, and you won’t even realize all the knowledge and useful skills you’re absorbing.
What did ACEL cultivate in you?
As I got more involved and familiar with the department, I was forced to go beyond my comfort zone. ACEL cultivated confidence and a sense of community that couldn’t be replicated elsewhere on campus.