Maryanna Frazier

As an intern focusing on the Agricultural Education program, I believe it’s really important to recruit potential students in a compelling way. To achieve this, I wanted to get an Agricultural Education student’s perspective with hopes to give incoming freshmen or potential students insight into the program. Maryanna is a student worker at the Department of Community and Leadership Development and we have worked side by side throughout the semester in CLD’s computer lab. She is a junior Agricultural Education student, so I believed she would have a great understanding of the program at this point and would be able to explain her experiences as an Ag Ed student in depth.

What prompted you to choose UK’s Agricultural Education program? Did you look at any other school’s AgEd program?

“The first year, I was in an Ag Ed program at another college and I did enjoy it there, but I felt that it wasn’t challenging me enough, and there were some things I wanted to do within the program that I wasn’t capable of doing there. I emailed Dr. Vincent about the Ag Ed program here and toured during the summer after my first year. He just gave me the opportunities that I needed and I felt that I would be challenged here, that’s why I moved to UK.”

What made you decide you want to go into the field Agricultural Education?

“I was really involved in my high school Ag Ed program and FFA; it’s something I’ve always found intriguing and I just had a huge love for agriculture. I knew I wanted a degree in agriculture, but I didn’t really know what specifically, so I thought Agricultural Education would be a great broad program to join.”

How has your experience as an Agricultural Education student been so far?

“I would say my experience has been pretty amazing and phenomenal. I’ve grown so much as a student here; I’ve been challenged and been given great opportunities. I’ve done some pretty cool observations with different counties. Learning about Central Kentucky and how they work with their Ag Ed program has been something new to me. I’ve really enjoyed that aspect of it.”

What opportunities and/or experiences have you received as an Agricultural Education student that you feel are very valuable?

“One would be your connections through your observations. Meeting the teachers- that’s going to be a huge resource to you as a college student, getting their feedback, learning how they operate as a teacher, and how they do their lesson plans.

Then, I would say working with the FFA programs. Sometimes we do regional speaking days here or we host events for counties/our region and we get to volunteer for that and meet high school students. That’s a pretty cool opportunity to have.”

What have your classes and professors been like? How do you feel like the professors in Agricultural Education enhance your overall experience?

“My professors have all been really amazing. They’ve really helped challenge me if they know an area I need to be challenged in. They help with moving forward in school such as which classes I need to take. They’re a great support system outside of school. Not only are you their students-they want to be part of your life outside of school as well. I would say its a very tight knit community here.”

What piece of advice or information would you like to share with students who are considering Agricultural Education as their major?

“I would tell them that you should tour the campus and watch a class because you can’t truly decide until you talk to a professor first. If you are in between schools, you’ll figure out if you’re at the right school. No matter where you go, make sure that school is for you.

I think UK’s Ag Ed is the best is because we are given opportunities and we are kind of like a family here. If you think you may have a hard time in school or if you are going through a rough time, the faculty here will support you.”

What would you like to share that has been your favorite part of your experience as an Ag Education student?

“Oh gosh, this is hard to pick from. I really enjoyed my AED 362 class which is what you take as a sophomore in the fall. I enjoyed it because I got to go to Loyal Middle School with Mr. Anderson and he was such a phenomenal teacher that implemented hands on learning, which is how I learn best. It was a really great time to enjoy the Ag Ed field and see a perspective that I hadn’t seen before coming to UK.”

How would you say that the Ag Ed program at UK “opens a wide door of opportunities” for its students?

“I do think that the Ag Ed program does have many different cultural bases. Even if you are from the same race, there is a lot of differences and I like that because you get a different perspective. The Ag Ed classes you take to go from your freshman year to your senior year is pretty amazing because as a freshman we start out learning just the intro basics, how to lesson plan, learning education history, and then sophomore year you transition more into teaching.  This year, as a junior, I am in a multicultural immersion class where we basically learn about the way people think and learn about different cultures. We are also learning about things that we could implement in our classroom like how different students think and how to help them if they aren’t from our background. Senior year you receive your student teaching placements.

An exciting opportunity that Ag Ed students have is the chance to go to Australia to teach. In each of your classes, there are chances to spread your wings and go. It’s up to you which route you go. Your teachers will provide the resources and you get to make it happen.”

What are you excited about or looking forward to after graduation?

“I’m excited to finally have a degree! I am not sure if I want to go straight into the workforce- I think I would like to go to graduate school first and then head into my career. I have an interest in teaching middle school Agricultural Education in the future.”

Allison CooperAllison was a Fall 2017 intern with the Department of Community and Leadership Development focusing on the Agricultural Education program. She is a junior Marketing major with interest in creative marketing and communications, and hopes to pursue a career in this field after graduation. She says she has gained valuable experience and knowledge through her CLD internship and has loved the opportunity to work with agricultural related topics.