Alumni Spotlight: Patrick Nolan ’08


[ACEL]: Hi Patrick! Why did you select your major?
[Nolan]: I was active in 4-H and FFA for ten years.  The activities, camps, leadership development that I participated with during that time laid the foundation for me deciding that Agricultural Education was the right path for me.

Why did you choose to attend The Ohio State University?
Tradition! My parents and sister attended OSU, all graduating from CFAES. Many of my aunts, uncles and cousins also attended The Ohio State University, most of them graduating from CFAES as well. My relationship with Ohio State started when parents took my sister and me to an OSU football game when I was around 5 years old. Building upon that experience and yearly visits to campus during my primary school years solidified that I wanted to become a Buckeye myself!

What were you involved in as an Ohio State student?
I was a member of ATZ FarmHouse Fraternity, Poultry Sciences Club, Ag Ed Society, CFAES College Ambassador, Order of Omega Greek Honorary, SPHINX Senior Class Honorary,  Edward S. “Beanie” Drake Student Leadership Endowment Board, OSU Orientation Leader, OSU Presidential Host, and selected as one of the University Outstanding Seniors. Also, I was selected to participate in the “Do Sometime Great” commercial for OSU that aired during televised football games in 2006. I used that platform to hype up the Poultry Science Club!

What classes did you enjoy the most while at Ohio State? What was your favorite and why?
The quarter that I participated in the core group of classes in Ag Ed called “The Block”  was a very memorable experience.  I was blessed to have had an amazing cohort who supported and bonded with each other. Faculty such as Dr. Whittington, Dr. Cano, and Dr. Lichtensteiger worked to teach us proper pedagogy in preparation for our student teaching experiences.

What is your favorite memory related to your time at Ohio State?
There are so many memories that I hold dear regarding my time as a student at OSU and center around my Buckeye relationships.  Whether it be attending the bowl games with Fraternity brothers, all night movie watches on third floor of Norton, international experiences in the Dominican Republic and Czech Republic I developed friendships that I truly value. Ohio State engulfs you in a Scarlet and Grey family that transcends college and bonds you for life.

For what schools, companies and/or organizations have you worked throughout your career?
After I graduated from OSU, I attended graduate school at the University of Clemson in Higher Education.  While at Clemson, I worked in their International Office as well as the Advancement Office. My first full time job was with the Muskingum University as a development officer, then I was fortunate to be hired as the Associate Director of Development for CFAES based at the Wooster campus. I spent roughly 3 years living in Sacramento, CA and working as a Director of Development for the University of Califorina, Davis in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. Missing family, friends, and the four seasons, I moved back to Ohio to take a Major Gifts Officer position with The College of Wooster last October.

As of today, what is your favorite career highlight?
While I was at UC Davis, I was selected by the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences to be a consultant/presenter for the U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Agriculture and Food Security which was started by USAID. My role was to advise the University of Agricultural Faisalabad (UFA) on fundraising. I was asked to present to university administrators, faculty/staff, and community leaders regarding common practices of fundraising in the US. I developed best practices of fundraising for the university which they reviewed and began implementing.

What advice would you give to a current student?
The best advice for CFAES/ACEL students would be . . . don’t be afraid of crossing the river to be involved. CFAES does a great job of providing anything you could ever want as a student. Challenging oneself is what college is about and trying new things and meeting individuals who share a different background will open a world of possibilities.

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