By Krista Downing
This past summer in-between semesters at Iowa State, I spent my time working as an intern with Decision Innovation Solutions (DIS). Having an internship is a requirement for my major of Agriculture Communications and I was lucky enough to land an internship as the company’s Agriculture Communications Intern for 2016. While at DIS I worked on implementing their social media plan to help grow their social media presence. I have learned many things during my time at DIS that I can relate back to my experience on my family’s farm and in real life.
Learned about different areas in agriculture
My background going into this internship consisted of growing up on a farm that produced corn, soybeans, and cattle. During my time here I was introduced more in-depth to a whole different area of the agriculture industry; renewable fuels and energy. The things I got to research and learn about were; ethanol, cellulosic ethanol, wind energy, and solar energy. Learning about these things was an enormous benefit to me as an agriculture communications major because I have broadened my knowledge of the industry and now have more knowledge about different areas in the agriculture industry. You always need to have the willingness to grow & continue to learn about new things while working in the agriculture industry.
Realized how important social media is
Since we are living in a generation that is all about their social media, knowing how to properly communicate information online is extremely vital. I had the job to help implement the social media strategy for DIS. I learned many things about posting on social media, things like ALWAYS use an image with your post, interact with your followers, and try to post every day. I also learned how to keep track of social media analytics to see how much interaction we were getting with our posts. Learning these things is vital to be able to properly communicate online with people about anything you are trying to promote.
How to be an adult (I think…?)
As someone who has gone to school my entire life and whose main job was working on my family farm, I never really had what some people consider “actual job experience” (even though working on a farm is the best work experience you could probably ever have). I had never gone into an office every day and worked a 40 hour week, until this internship. Getting this internship and being able to experience what it’s like to be an “adult” and have a full time job was the best thing I could have gotten to experience.I now know what to expect here in a few short months when I graduate and go out into the real world, and I couldn’t be anymore thankful for that.
As my time at DIS is coming to an end, I realize that learning these things will greatly benefit me in the future. I highly recommend experiencing an internship if you are a student or offering an internship if you are a company, the lessons learned are everlasting. Having this amazing opportunity has been quite the experience. Thank you DIS for giving me this opportunity, it truly has been a great learning experience!