The University of Delaware held its first Poultry Career Seminar series this fall with funding provided by a grant from the United States Poultry Foundation and additional funds from the UD Career Services. The series of four seminars were held on October 3, 8, 16 and November 1.
Connie Parvis, director of education and consumer information from Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc., spoke at the Oct. 3 seminar. She started the program giving an overview of the industry and discussed career and scholarship opportunities. She was joined by Byron C. Friend from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service who spoke about how his service facilitates the marketing of poultry, poultry products and eggs.
The second seminar included Bernie Murphy, a UD alumni who earned his doctorate from Iowa State University and serves as President of the Jones Hamilton Co., a leader in producing, packaging and distributing chemicals and compounds for a variety of customers since 1951.
Perdue Farms also presented during the second seminar, with Todd Baker, breeders operations manager, Katelyn MacCann, UD alumna and breeders farm manager, and Chris DelCastillo, Milford associate relations representative, speaking about career and internship opportunities at Perdue Farms, a family-owned company producing the Perdue brand of premium fresh chicken based in Salisbury, Maryland.
The third seminar included Pat Townsend, director of human resources at Mountaire Farms, who described their year long management training program, as well as internship and career opportunities. Mountaire Farms is a diverse poultry and agricultural business that partners with local farming communities to raise chickens and grains to feed them.
He was followed by Bill Brown, UD alumni and UD poultry extension specialist, and Carissa Wickens, assistant professsor and equine extension specialist. Brown described the purpose of Cooperative Extension and the many career opportunities it affords, while Wickens discussed the CANR Cooperative Extension Summer Scholars Internship Program and brought along her summer scholar, Rebecca Frost, a sophmore studying in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences (ANFS).
Chuck Snipes, Mid-Atlantic sales representative of Cobb-Vantress, Inc., gave an overview of his company’s research, development and production of broiler breeding stock and the company’s internship and career opportunities. The final speaker in the seminar series was Nannette Olmeda-Geniec, poultry technical consultant for Elanco, an international company that develops products and services that enhance animal health, wellness and performance. Olmeda-Geniec is a veterinarian who earned her doctorate at UD in ANFS and presented an overview of this international company and the opportunities for internships and careers within her company.
A total of 81 students attended the seminars, with seven students attending all four. The seminars were also used to promote the United States Poultry Foundation’s College Student Career Program to be held in Atlanta, Georgia in January 2013. The program will allow students opportunities to interview with 25 regional, national and international poultry and agribusiness companies and organizations while having the opportunity to network with over 970 companies.
A goal of ANFS is to increase the number of students participating in the United States Poultry Foundation’s College Student Career Program. This year the ANFS Department will increase the number of undergraduate and graduate students participating in the expo from 4 to 11.
Photo by Danielle Quigley