FRE Alumni Spotlight: Jenna Rogers

“Before I graduated, I had no clue what I wanted to do as far as a career or job. Now that I am working in marketing and HR, I want to climb the metaphorical ladder and become a marketing manager.”

Jenna Rogers graduated this spring with a degree in Food and Resource Economics, specializing in Food & Agribusiness Marketing and Management. Since graduation, she has been working at Liner Source, Inc. as a Marketing and HR Assistant. She only started the position 8 weeks ago, but she has already taken on multitudes. She has been running the social media accounts for Liner Source, Inc. and Royalty Plants (“give them a follow on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook!”), sent out email newsletters, created the website for Royalty Plants, updated the website for Liner Source, Inc., updated and published documents for the company, implemented new organization systems, written job descriptions, and created banners and signs. She’s definitely right when she says that communication and interpersonal skills are exercised most.

“Internships get you places, people!”

While attending school, Jenna wasn’t sure what she wanted to do after graduation, but she had taken the initiative of pursuing internships. She interned at Sterling Equipment Mfg. Co., as well as Liner Source, Inc (where she is now). As an intern, you don’t always get many responsibilities, but Jenna recommends that interns take the time to watch and absorb their surroundings and to always keep their minds open and active. “Learn how salespeople interact with customers; pay attention to how the boss-man comes up with pricing for different products; watch and pay attention to improvements you could make or suggest”. “College teaches you a lot of things and concepts, but nearly everything that you will be using in your daily work-life is learned through experience and the observation of others”.

“Buddy, you are going to use Excel.”

There are lots of applicable skills and fundamentals that students learn in FRE. Jenna says the classes that required the use of excel helped prepare her the most for her position. She also says that group projects helped prepare her for life after graduation, regardless of how much she hated them at the time. She says that sometimes you’re the one who has to pick up the slack, but “You are going to really push yourself with how much you can accomplish on your own”. This helped enhance her work ethic and her ability to identify when something is “good enough”, noting, “All the fellow perfectionists out there will one day understand what I mean!”

She attributes her critical thinking skills to being in the FRE major. “When I am given a huge task in the real world, there are not step-by-step instructions labeled a, b, and c. All you get is your supervisor/manager/boss telling you to do a large and very broad task. You have to learn what questions to ask; your professor is no longer writing them out for you to answer in 2 to 4 sentences. You have to break down the project into baby steps that you can accomplish every day. It’s a lot like when your professor breaks up your projects in a class by having you turn in three separate parts/papers on set dates.”

FRE Favorites:

Best part of FRE?: “The professors were the best part about the FRE major. By far.”

Favorite FRE class?: “Dr. Misti Sharp’s Contemporary Issues course. I had fun doing the assignments and always felt fulfilled knowing that I was using concepts and knowledge that I had picked up in the FRE major. Several courses were highly educational (and challenging!) such as Dr. Farnsworth’s Ag. Finance course.”

Favorite FRE memory?: “I loved making witty/funny remarks during class and seeing my professor and friends get a chuckle out of it. Don’t worry–you can still do this at your job!”

Advice to current FRE students:

Jenna offers this advice for current FRE students:
“Try hard, pay attention, have fun, enjoy this lack of responsibility (even though you don’t realize how light your responsibilities are right now, trust me on
this), enjoy your free time (you don’t get much when you start working), party hard (but don’t do anything you can’t take back, nor anything that can be
put on social media to haunt you for the remainder of your days), learn how to pay a bill, learn how to cook, learn how to file your taxes, learn how to
save your money, and find out what makes you happy.”

She also notes to faculty and staff: “Keep doing what you are doing! You guys are awesome and have the patience of saints. Seriously. I’ve been in your classes. I’ve seen what you have to deal with.” She’d like to give a special shoutout to Dr. Sharp and Dr. Farnsworth, stating “Y’all are great professors and people. I wish you tons upon tons of happiness! :)”


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Posted: July 2, 2021

Category: Agribusiness
Tags: Ag Econ, Agricultural Economics, Alumni Spotlight, Food And Resource Economics, FRE, Graduate, Uf/ifas

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