Alfred State agricultural technology student Andrew Richards, of Silver Springs, recently represented the college as a 2018 Ambassador at the 185th New York State Agricultural Society Annual Meeting and Forum in Syracuse.
According to the society’s website, the Ambassador Scholarship program provides professional development opportunities each year to 15 young adults interested in agriculture. The scholarship covers all expenses for attending the annual forum and a yearlong membership in the society.
The forum attracts hundreds of attendees and dozens of exhibitors. Alfred State was among several State University of New York (SUNY) campuses that participated in the forum as exhibitors.
“I wanted to apply for the NYS Ag Society Forum because I thought it looked like a good learning experience,” said Richards. “I got to meet a lot of different people in agriculture and even managed to get an internship with the Animal Health Diagnostic Center at Cornell University.”
As an Ambassador, Richards was paired with a mentor to enhance his experience at the forum and overall understanding of New York agriculture. Richards said his mentor introduced him to different people and helped familiarize him with the forum, which offered a valuable opportunity to network and engage with business professionals in agriculture. This year, the forum brought in over 470 attendees, according to the event webpage.
Speaking about his field, Richards noted, “Agricultural technology is a very important tool to help improve agriculture and sustainability. More technology is being utilized on farms now than ever before and I believe it is the path agriculture will continue to take to keep up with the growing population.”