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CALS Alumna Named New Assistant Director of Ag Institute

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the Agricultural Institute (AGI)  recently named Alyssa Degreenia as the new assistant director of the AGI. For the past seven years, Degreenia has been instrumental in developing, implementing and managing the internship program that has served over 400 students since its inception.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in agricultural science from North Carolina State University and minored in extension education, animal science and agricultural business management. Degreenia also holds a master’s and doctoral degree in agricultural and extension education with a focus on agricultural leadership from NC State. 

Degreenia first joined AGI as part of the graduate assistantship program during her Masters and has never looked back.

“I love working with students and employers in agriculture because they’re so passionate about it. They love what they do. They love agriculture. I’ve been really fortunate,” Degreenia says. “I love the community and seeing where students go. It’s a smaller part of this big university and to me, it feels like a family. It always has.”

In her role as assistant director, Degreenia will continue to work with the AGI internship program, student ambassadors, student recruitment and student retention through academic success classes. She will collaborate on research about the impact of the AGI programs on students and their communities, as well as  helping manage the Golden Leaf Foundation grant for the Agricultural Operations Certificate and student mentorship program.

“Alyssa has great energy, excellent student engagement skills, and creativity. I look forward to collaborating with her on ways to promote agricultural education throughout the Agricultural Institute and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences,” says Lee Ivy, AGI director and assistant director of academic programs. “Her commitment to the Ag Institute and CALS has impacted many students and programs. It will be exciting to see her impact continue through this leadership role.”

Degreenia says she wants to increase opportunities for students. 

“I would like to focus some of my time researching and figuring out how we can better help our students once they’re here. How can we help them get  connected when they’re on campus?” says Degreenia. She is also excited to help students find what they want to do after the program — whether that’s starting a career or going on to earn a bachelor’s degree. 

“My dad is an elementary school teacher and always joked, ‘Don’t go into teaching.’ Through growing up in the 4-H program, I knew I wanted to work with people in agriculture, and when I started working in the Ag Institute, I found that I actually really loved teaching. I have been so fortunate that my career has worked out the way it has,” says Degreenia.

Degreenia says she couldn’t be more happy in the Agricultural Institute. 

“Think about winning the Clemson game. That’s how I feel.”

This post was originally published in College of Agriculture and Life Sciences News.