Kristen Lowe (’20 agriculture and society and public relations) of Dysart, Iowa is the Fall 2018 College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) convocation speaker.
As a highly-involved student in her time studying at Iowa State University and abroad, Lowe will provide those in attendance at CALS convocation with an inspiring perspective. Though she has a host of experiences – which also earned her the Outstanding Senior Award from CALS – from which to draw and share, Lowe was not expecting the invitation to be convocation speaker.
“I was mostly just humbled when Dean Acker reached out to me to speak for the Class of 2018 CALS Convocation. I have studied and worked alongside so many bright colleagues that the thought of addressing them at Convocation was a bit overwhelming,” explained Lowe. “I am so proud of the college we are graduating from, and am so excited for the chance to convey that pride as the class speaker.”
As a student, Lowe had several invaluable internships. She interned with organizations including the Iowa Corn Growers Association, National Pork Producers Council, Iowa Grain Quality Initiative, Renewable Energy Group, and LG Seeds. They have set her up for a successful career.
“I feel as though these opportunities truly built me into the young professional I am today,” said Lowe “I learned time management skills while working part-time during academic semesters, I found the direction I wanted to pursue after college and I connected with mentors who I now perceive as role models.”
Not only did Lowe take on a variety of internships in the United States, but she gained valuable experience studying abroad that she plans to apply in her next position.
“After traveling to Rome to work for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, I have refined my passion for agriculture into a passion for a more diversified and conscious agricultural industry. I see Iowa as a state that surpasses the majority of the world in agricultural production, but I also want to see Iowa do better. My hope is to make a difference in the state I call home!”
And Lowe’s post-graduation plans will afford her the opportunity to affect the change she desires in the place the loves the most.
“I am excited to move to Waukee, Iowa and begin my work as the communications manager for Dream Dirt Farm Real Estate and Auction. I look forward to playing an integral role in the growth of this small business! I also look forward to getting involved in professional organizations to further my network across the agricultural industry,” said Lowe.
Lowe credits the Department of Sociology for teaching her how to look at things in different ways.
“Throughout all of my sociology classes, one simple lesson kept appearing: The world’s issues are complex and an open mind is necessary to find any answers,” Lowe said. “Sociology classes humbled me to see the greater picture of the challenges that face our entire global society.”
Looking at things from an analytical perspective to see the big picture was what inspired Lowe to be a change agent, no matter what she does.
From her experiences, Lowe has gained wisdom to share with students so they can follow in her footsteps and make an impact on Iowa State University and whatever community of which they are a part when they graduate. Her advice? Say yes to all of the opportunities you can.
“My best advice would be to get involved in as much as your schedule can handle. I would have left Iowa State with a smaller set of skills, friends, and lessons if it weren’t for the clubs, leadership positions, and internships that I have been involved in,” said Lowe. “Lessons learned in the classroom are important, but the activities you get involved in outside of the classroom truly shape you into the young professional you can become.”