April 2009, Volume 13, Number 4


Student selected to attend USDA forum

Evelina Arzanova

MDC Honors College student Evelina Arzanova was one of only 18 college students chosen to attend a national forum on agribusiness, which highlighted the latest research, future trends and policy in contemporary agriculture. She was the only student from a community college.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) selected Arzanova to attend its 2009 Agricultural Outlook Forum as part of the department’s student diversity program. Selection was based on essay submissions on the topic “Agriculture as a Career.”

The USDA’s Office of the Chief Economist and the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service launched the student diversity program in 2007 to help provide students with unique insight into their agricultural studies.

Arzanova is studying biology with plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in science and attend medical school to become an anesthesiologist. She hopes this experience will expose her to new possibilities.

“Agriculture is not my field, but I think trying something new will help me to know if what I am doing is the right thing for me. It’s going to be very interesting,” said Arzanova, who splits her time between the North Campus newspaper, The Falcon Times, and membership in Phi Beta Kappa and the Biology Club, of which she is president. “I look forward to representing our school,” she said.

The forum, titled “Global Agriculture & Rural America in Transition,” is the USDA’s largest annual event. Distinguished guests from the private sector and academia include Chris Policinski, president and CEO of Land O’Lakes Inc.; Daniel Yergin, chairman of Cambridge Energy Research Associates Inc.; and Catherine Ann Bertini, Syracuse University professor and senior fellow for Bill & Melinda Gates’ Foundation.

Career interest in the sciences is particularly relevant as the nation seeks to address the workforce shortages that will emerge in the next decade as Baby Boomers retire in larger numbers. MDC is addressing this challenge with programs in biology, biotechnology, agriculture, engineering specialties and more.

— Staff Report

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