From ACE Ambassador Sarah Hochman:
This year I have had so many opportunities through the ACE Department, where I learned so much more about the world beyond Urbana-Champaign and the Chicago Suburbs, and my career path has definitely changed. I am still unsure about my path or where I will end up one day, but I have a couple of options that I would like to explore. After going to Sierra Leone through the ACES Study Abroad Program, I have a new found passion for Agriculture. I came into U of I, to the College of ACES, and had no interest in Agriculture and had skewed perceptions of it from films like Food, Inc. Although Sierra Leone is no U.S., it still was the first time I was on farm and with speaking to the people there a light bulb went off and I realized how important Agriculture is worldwide. In my Spring Agriculture Policy Class (ACE 199), we talked about the issues facing the Ag industry and the world. In D.C., we got firsthand experience discussing what we have learned with Government officials like, Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Krysta Harden and Chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Senator Debbie Stabenow. This made me realize how lucky I was that these women have made a path for women interested in agricultural policy. I don’t know what I want to be (staffer, senator, government relations for big Ag businesses, interest groups like AFB), but I do know that I want to make a difference in people’s lives. Agriculture affects every person in the world and it is the field I am happy and proud to say that I want to be in.