Ruben Lopez | Animal Science | BioResource Research | Boardman, OR | Class of 2022
College Assistance Migrant Program Completion
CAS Leadership Academy Completion | CAS Deans List Certificate of Excellence
2020-2021 National MANNRS Officer - Undergraduate Student Vice President
Leading the Way
Pushing through all the barriers that confronted me in continuing my education after high school, I successfully overcame them and made history in my immediate and extended family: I am the first to attend a four-year university in the United States.
Having made this possible has been my greatest accomplishment and I cannot express how much it has meant to represent my family.
The Power of Failure
I would describe myself as a highly motivated person who is very optimistic but also a realist when the going gets tough. The greatest leaders in my mind are those who have failed the most, and that being said, failing is part of the process to develop myself into my fullest potential. I’m not afraid of taking big steps that get me out of my comfort zone. In fact, I enjoy stepping out of my comfort zone and putting myself in the spotlight.
I participated in the College Assistance Migrant Program Scholar Internship this year and followed up by mentoring young students with a history in migrant or seasonal agricultural work to develop their personal and professional potential through leadership training with hands-on and practical intern experience during the academic year. This experience has and continues to allow me to further develop my communication skills, organizational skills, leadership development, and my critical-thinking skills. As part of the program, I have been challenged, but, due to this, my growth as an individual has strengthened the development of hard skills that I have been able to apply elsewhere. Furthermore, I am currently part of the College of Agricultural Sciences Ambassador Team which has provided me guidance and the resources to advocate for Agriculture. It has also contributed to my collaboration with other areas and growth as a leader. Lastly, throughout my time at Oregon State I have been involved with the Minorities in Agriculture Natural Resources and Related Sciences organization (MANRRS) expanding my social group and collaboration with others to bring awareness to minorities of the opportunities that are available in a variety of fields. I currently serve as Vice President for the 2019-2020 school year.
Living the Dream
My hometown of Boardman, OR taught me some valuable life lessons and helped shape the person I am today. Working at the feedlot with my dad starting at age 12 built a strong passion for livestock and led me to pursue a career path as a veterinarian. As a student at Oregon State University I passionately represent my Hispanic culture by getting involved and growing as a leader to empower other minorities to follow their dreams. Listening to motivational speakers and reading various leadership books has helped me gain perspectives on differing leadership styles which I use to build my own way of leading. My grit has kept me following my dreams for my long-term goal of achieving a Doctoral Degree in Veterinary Medicine.
I decided to double major in Animal Science and BioResource Research with an option in Animal Reproduction and Development to work my way towards becoming a veterinarian. I am minoring in Agricultural Business Management so I have an idea of the ag business side if I ever want to work for myself as a veterinarian.
My studies can impact society from an agricultural aspect: I want to keep the community I live in aware of how important it is to care for livestock animals. What does a world without animals look like? I want to have a positive influence on as many animals and people as possible.
Eye on the Prize
In five years I see myself finishing off my last few years of veterinary school with a focus on large animal livestock. My plan is to be at a veterinary school on the east coast because I have always had an interest in studying in a new area far away from home so I can explore other communities. I am passionate about inspiring and motivating younger minorities interested in higher education, especially those in agriculture, and I plan on being involved with programs supporting these students as well.
For incoming students to Oregon State, I would tell them they are in a place full of opportunities and growth. It is up to you to create the path using your fullest potential to develop yourself into a great leader. Don’t be afraid to get out there and shine. Instead of waiting for clubs to come after you, go after them! Make yourself at home and make yourself known around campus so you make the most of your time as a college student. If something makes you nervous, take it as a sign that you are in the right place. You are here to grow and learn new things that are part of the next chapter of your life.