August 03, 2022

Meet the Food Export Interns of 2022!



Once again we are celebrating National Intern Day!  

Every year Food Export - Midwest and Food Export - Northeast have a variety of interns that work in our own offices in Chicago and Philadelphia as well as directly with our member states Departments of Agriculture across the Midwest and Northeast.

So we thought National Intern Day was the perfect time to introduce you to the current 2022 roster of Food Export interns and celebrate the talent and energy they bring!

Lucy Shnitker

Charlotte Brockman
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Majoring in Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communications and Agronomy

What is your hometown?
Gooding, Idaho

Where are you currently an intern?
Nebraska Department of Agriculture

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
After graduation I would like to work with USDA FAS, or with the Peace Corps.

Fun fact about yourself
I have been to 36 U.S. states.

What is your dream travel destination?
I love to travel and one day hope to visit all 7 continents.


Sarah Gerards
Loyola University Chicago
Majoring in Global Studies and History

What is your hometown?
Omaha, Nebraska

Where are you currently an intern?
Food Export-Midwest in Chicago

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
After graduation, I would like to take a year or two to work, and then pursue a Master of Urban Planning degree. 

What is your dream travel destination?
My dream travel destination is Vietnam, as I was supposed to study abroad there in 2021.  


Jaden Henneman
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Majoring in Agricultural Business Management and Psychology, in addition to a certificate in Criminal Justice

What is your hometown?
Whitewater, Wisconsin, where I showed dairy cattle from a young age

Where are you currently an intern?
Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
I would either like to pursue a masters or doctorate in psychology or seek a position at a company in the agricultural sector in their promotions, awareness or education to their community in support of the agricultural industry, preferably related to dairy.  

Fun fact about yourself
I have grown up riding motorcycles, and since receiving my motorcycle license at 16, my family plans a motorcycle trip (short or long) every year.  

What is your dream travel destination?
The castles in Europe, specifically in Scotland and Ireland.


Emily Koch
Purdue University
Majoring in Agricultural Economics

What is your hometown?
Oldenburg, Indiana

Where are you currently an intern?
Indiana State Department of Agriculture

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
After graduation, I would like to find a job in the animal agribusiness industry. 

Fun fact about yourself
Last summer I worked with elephants at the Indianapolis Zoo. 

What is your dream travel destination?
African Safari



Alex Pruitt
Ohio State University
Majoring in Public Policy Analysis and Philosophy, Politics and Economics with a Minor in International Business

What is your hometown?
I was born in Rockwall, Texas, I live in Lima, Ohio, and I am moving to Columbus, Ohio in less than a month. 

Where are you currently an intern?
Ohio Department of Development

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
Both personally and professionally, I plan to work in international business to facilitate travel. I am currently looking at logistical work for large scale shipping companies, working to become the spokesman of a company, or staying with the government as either a liaison or diplomat to do this. 

Fun fact about yourself
A fun fact about myself is that I have lived in 8 States, 2 continents, and 2 countries over the course of 21 years. I have lived in what will be my 15th house as of the 6th of August and attended 13 schools. The other continent and country where I lived was South Africa, over the course of a foreign exchange year I took when I was 16. 

What is your dream travel destination?
My dream travel location is one of a few - Greece, Ireland and Scotland, or Japan. 


Peyton Richie
Iowa State University
Majoring in Agricultural Communications

What is your hometown?
Buckingham, Illinois

Where are you currently an intern?
Illinois Department of Agriculture

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
After graduation, I would like to travel the United States publicly speaking on the importance of agriculture. 

Fun fact about yourself
My favorite food is corn dogs. 

What is your dream travel destination?
Hawaii



Gracie Smith
State Technical College of Missouri
Majoring in Agriculture Business

What is your hometown?
Linn, Missouri

Where are you currently an intern?
Missouri Department of Agriculture

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
I would like to continue to work for the Department. I enjoy meeting new people and promoting agriculture. 

Fun fact about yourself
My favorite animal is a cow. 

What is your dream travel destination?
Italy


Maddie VanGessel
Michigan State University

What is your hometown?
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Where are you currently an intern?
Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
I would love to move somewhere new and work in product or brand marketing. 

Fun fact about yourself
I have a goldendoodle puppy named Lou.

What is your dream travel destination?
Greece


Oksana Zharovsky

Loyola University Chicago
Majored in Global and International Studies, Criminal Justice/Criminology

What is your hometown?
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Where are you currently an intern?
Food Export-Midwest in Chicago

What you would like to do professionally, or personally, after graduation?
Eventually, I would like to go to law school and work for a nonprofit.

Fun fact about yourself
I love to electric skateboard and go to EDM concerts.

What is your dream travel destination?
Greece