Strategies to increase engagement and connections presented at national conference

July 12, 2018
Trish Raridan Preston visiting Gross Farms, a potato farm in Idaho.

Trish Raridan Preston, career advisor in the School of Environment and Natural Resources attended and presented at the 2018 National Agriculture Alumni and Development Association Annual Conference, “Digging Deep: Cultivate your Capacity” held in Boise, Idaho in June. Her presentation, “Building Better Engagement through Strategic Programing Using Data and Trends to Make Informed Decisions for Students, Alumni, and Employers” shared strategies to grow engagement and connections between students, counseling staff, faculty, alumni, and employers.

The conference brings together alumni, development and student professional staff from land-grant universities across the United States.  Preston was able to meet and collaborate with other land-grant university career services staff.  “Through this collaboration we are hoping to launch some co-branded career resources for our students to use that will benefit students seeking careers in agriculture, and the environmental industries,” Raridan Preston said. Participants had the opportunity to attend six sessions, including a networking opportunity and participate in educational tours, which included a visit to the University of Idaho Water Center and a potato industry tour, where participants learned about potato production and sustainability efforts, including the use of precision technology to save resources and reduce their energy use. Attendees also had the opportunity to engage in a service project with the Idaho Food Bank. “We packaged up one ton of powdered milk for clients of the pantry,” said Raridan Preston.