Who We’re Hiring At…NC State Extension
Associate Director and State Program Leader, 4-H
NC State Extension connects the citizens of North Carolina with the latest research and information from the university, helping grow economies across the state. Their emphasis is on agriculture, health and youth development.
How would you define the “student of tomorrow”?
The research shows that 65 percent of current students will be doing jobs that do not yet exist, so we’re going to need young people who can think critically, and who have as strong an academic background as they can get in the areas that we work in. They’re going to have to be able to evaluate information and apply it to solve everyday problems. In there too is the ability to be a team player, because we are very much a collaboration between federal, state and local communities.
What never changes is the need for students who have a high level of integrity and a heart for service.
What makes a resume stand out?
We want someone who has some experience in the areas we’re interested in, so let’s say we’re looking at a young person right out of college – do they have any internship experience? Were they raised on a farm? Were they exposed to Extension at some point in the past so they understand the level of commitment it takes to be an outstanding Extension employee?
A lot of what we do is agriculture, but we also need people who are looking for ways to enhance food security, food safety, plant and animal production – we need people with experience in a lot of different areas, but they’re all going to have to be able to analyze information and break it down so people can use it to solve problems.
What can CALS do to develop the future employees you need?
I think CALS is doing a great job right now. The key is building not only content knowledge, but also experiential opportunities. Internships, jobs, summer development opportunities – anything that expands both knowledge and experience in our areas of focus. We need people who are going to be able to put two and two together in the workforce. That’s not always easy, so having more experience out in the real world will help prepare them to do that – and give them one of those resumes that kind of pops out at you.