Alex Varga

My name is Alex Varga and I am from Elmira, New York. I am a sophomore at Oregon State University studying Food Science and Technology as well as Sustainability with a focus on Fermentation Science. I am actively involved in food science laboratories on campus and am an officer in two clubs in the College of Agriculture here at Oregon State. I plan to move on into the corporate world in the pursuit of a job in research and development and product marketing. In order to make my way into the job market, I’ve spent time studying and practicing many leadership skills that will help me bring success to myself and my teammates in the future. Some skills that I’ve been working on include systems thinking, organizational leadership, and precise communication and listening, as these are essential skills used in life and the workplace. In the Leadership Academy, I want to hone some of these skills, and focus on developing myself in other areas as well.

Allison Perez

I was born in San Jose, CA and raised in Beaverton, OR. I am a senior studying BioResource Research with anoption in Biotechnology and minors in Toxicology and Chemistry. In the future, I plan to pursue a research career in the field of toxicology. I believe that a good leader is someone who leads with a heart of service, striving to make the world around them a better place. From the Leadership Academy, I hope to gain a better understanding of my own personal strengths and weaknesses and learn how to grow in areas where I need improvement.

Alyssa Nelson

My name is Alyssa Nelson. I am originally from Mount Vernon, Washington and I am now a Junior studying Animal Science with an option in Pre-Veterinary Medicine with a minor in Chemistry and a minor in Fisheries and Wildlife. I am still exploring my career options in the Animal Science field for a long-term career that provides me with opportunities to work with a variety of different animal species as well as educate the public. I believe that a good leader is made up of a lot of different qualities, one being the ability and willingness to always learn something new. I hope to be able to gain more knowledge about myself through the Leadership Academy and gain more skills in communication, networking, and much more in my personal and professional development.

Anisa Garcia

I am from an "urban village" named Laveen within the city of Phoenix, Arizona. I am currently a junior, majoring in Natural Resources with a specialization in Human Dimensions in Fish and Wildlife Conservation and possibly a minor in Business and Entrepreneurship. I plan to become a Wildlife Rehabilitator or Animal Behavior Counselor to work for an animal sanctuary/refuge or manage the nonprofit organization. I am interested in evolution, ecology, conservation, and cultural studies. I believe a good leader is someone who is motivating, innovative, open-minded, friendly, influential but also vulnerable. I hope to learn and grow from the Leadership Academy as an undergrad moving on to the workforce. I also hope to become aspirational with a strong and positive outlook on life with a capability of overcoming challenges and hurdles through my personal and professional journey.

Ashley Devery

My name is Ashley Devery and I am from Watsonville, California. I am currently a junior at Oregon State University, and I am majoring in Agricultural Business Management with a minor in Crop Science. In the long-term I hope to have a career within the agricultural industry that allows me to grow both personally and professionally. I believe a good leader has a multitude of different qualities. Two that I believe are very important include being open minded and leading through inspiring the strengths of others. I hope to gain leadership knowledge that I am able to implement in all aspects of my life. I am very excited for this year and getting the opportunity to grow with my peers.

Brooke Schlipf

I am originally from Anchorage, AK but also grew up in the Portland area. I am majoring in fisheries and wildlife science with a specialization in marine management and community ecology. I am senior standing and strive to be in a position where I can support the management of marine fisheries in addition to providing outreach to the public. I believe a good leader is someone who is compassionate, humble, and will strive to work with the team not just govern what needs to happen. I hope to gain additional experience with small group leadership and tone in my strengths, in addition to improving my personal time and stress management skills.

Camryn Flint

I am from Tigard, OR and am a sophomore studying Animal Science with a Pre-Veterinary Option. I would like to attend the Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine here at Oregon State and eventually become a veterinarian, possibly with small or exotic animals.A good leader to me leads by example. They may not always be the one giving orders, but everything that they do is what they expect of others as well. A good leader also is able to stand up for themselves and others in situations where it is not easy to be the odd voice out. From the Leadership Academy, I hope to gain more skills in conflict management and assertiveness. Also, I hope to hone my ability to maintain a clear mind when leading under pressure, as that is an important skill in the world of veterinary medicine.

Chandra Maki

I am from Colfax, Washington and am a Junior studying Crop and Soil Science with an option of plant breeding and genetics and agronomy. I hope to become a plant breeder, hopefully with a focus on wheat breeding and genetic works. I think a good leader is someone who is not afraid to take control of a situation that is in need of leading. This person also does it in a manner of treating other group members with respect and letting everyone's voices be heard. While in the Leadership Academy, I hope to gain the confidence to take control of situations that need leadership. I also hope to become a contributing group member in school and in my career with the skills I will get from this program.

Ellissa Durning

I am from Union Country, Oregon in a small town known as Imbler. I am a senior currently attending Oregon State University pursuing a major in Agricultural Sciences with an emphasis in education. After graduating with my bachelor’s, I intend to further my education and pursue a master's in Agricultural Education. I aspire to be a high school agriculture teacher and FFA advisor so I may further educate our youth and encourage them to grow.

I believe that a good leader constitutes a mixture of traits and can connect with a variety of people. While they are leading, they are considerate and set a good example for those around them. Leaders work well with others and are always encouraging people
to thrive.

In Leadership Academy I hope to gain new skills that make me a more rounded person as well as learn to recognize and include those who feel outcast in group or team situations.

Emily George

My name is Emily George and I am from Wallowa Oregon. I am currently a junior and majoring in Agricultural Business Management with a minor in leadership. Although I don't yet know what my exact career goals are, I am interested in the marketing or sales side of agriculture, somewhere where I can work directly with the public and others. To be a good leader one must be open minded, have confidence in who they are, be genuine, and care about the people they are leading. I am a strong component of the idea of leading by example. Throughout the Leadership Academy, I hope to gain applicable skills that will help me to become more confident in my own skills and ideas along with learning how to make a genuine connection with whoever I may come across and work with in life. I am also looking forward to learning from my mentor and taking to heart all of her life experiences and knowledge.

Evan Brown

I am from Beaverton, Oregon and I am majoring in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences. I am a Senior and will hopefully be graduating spring term 2019. My long-term career goals are to work as a fish biologist, marine or freshwater, and ideally shift towards aquatic habitat conservation. In all career paths there are chances to be a leader, but to be a good leader one must be open to new ideas, trusting of their team, willing to accept fault, and understand how to utilize strengths. I hope to gain exactly these qualities from the leadership academy. After this experience I want to be confident in my own decisions, to focus on my strengths rather than my weaknesses, and to be humble when I am wrong.

Hailey Patterson

I am Hailey Patterson and I originate from Imbler, which is a small rural town located in Northeastern Oregon. I am currently pursuing a degree in Agricultural Sciences as a Sophomore in the Degree Partnership program with Linn-Benton Community College. After school completion, I plan on becoming an Agricultural Sciences Educator.

A good leader to me is one that knows when to lead and when to step back and allow others to lead. They are honest, see the value in vulnerability, are an effective communicator, accountable and able to make decisions. Not only this, but they're also good at delegating duties to others, not only to make sure they're giving their full focus to the projects they're working on, but to give others the opportunity to lead.

Through the Leadership Academy, I'm looking forward to gaining more knowledge on leadership in general, but more specifically, conflict resolution skills, delegation techniques, and being able to identify and understand how to work with people with varying view points and perspectives. I'm excited to gain new connections and get more involved within my institution and community.

Hannah Hooker

I am from the southern Oregon coast and grew up in a town known (to about 3,000 people) as
Gold Beach. I am a senior in Animal Science with an option in veterinary medicine. My long-term career goals are to become a large animal Veterinarian, possibly with a focus in equines.

I think that in order to be a good leader, you need to be a well-rounded person. Granted, I believe that there are many different ways to be a good leader, but they all require some base ingredients of integrity, the ability to delegate, confidence, and the drive to ensure all members of the group are heard.

From my experiences in the Leadership Academy, I really hope to elevate my current skills as well as develop some that I have yet to establish. I also hope to build connections with my cohort, learn valuable lessons and advice from my mentor, and discover different ways that I can continue to better myself.

Jakelyn Santa Cruz-Enriquez

I am from Hood River, Oregon and I am currently in my 3rd year here at Oregon State studying Agricultural Business Management with a minor in Animal Sciences. I hope to own my own Agricultural related company and provide financial services to local farmers and ranchers. I believe that a good leader can lead by example, help others achieve their goals, can provide and receive constructive feedback, and be a good genuine listener. I am very blessed to be given this opportunity to participate in the College of Agricultural Sciences Leadership Academy program.

I am very excited to learn more about myself and gain skills on how to become a better leader. I hope to take the skills and knowledge learned from this year and put them into play in my future career.

Jessica Carter

I am from Seneca, Oregon. I am a sophomore studying Animal Sciences. In the future, I hope to become a high school agriculture teacher and FFA advisor.

I believe a good leader has a humble servant's heart. Their motivation to lead is to see others grow and succeed.

In Leadership Academy, I hope to build new friendships with the other fellows and gain professional connections. I also hope to expand my skills in communicating my ideas to influence others.

Jessica Croxson

I am from Arbuckle, California. I am a Junior studying Animal Science major with an emphasis in Livestock Production and a minor in Agricultural Business Management. I am pursuing a career in the animal health or livestock industry.

A good leader is someone willing to make something happen in order to serve others and set a positive example, while also communicating, encouraging, and motivating those around them to do the same thing better than what was done before.

I hope that Leadership Academy and the journey that comes along with it allows me to gain the ability to take a leap of faith and jump out of my comfort zone to better myself as an individual.

Jonathan Lopez-Valadez

My name is Jonathan Lopez-Valadez. I am from Merrill, Oregon, a rural farming community in the southern part of the state. I am a senior studying agricultural science with a minor in horticulture.

My long-term goals are to become a high school agriculture educator and provide a successful/positive experience within the FFA organization.

I think the characteristics of a good leader include: a wareness of other people’s emotions, understanding of their own biases and limitations, and caring of those that are being led.

What I hope to gain from the Leadership Academy experience is a more well-rounded approach and development of my leadership abilities; such as improving/understanding the aspects of leadership that I may have difficulties with and honing the leadership skills that are more natural to me.

Kaylee Marr

My name is Kaylee Marr and I am from Eugene, Oregon and a proud Beaver fan despite it. I am a Junior studying animal science with a pre-veterinary option and chemistry minor. My long-term career goal is to become a veterinarian and provide medical care to small animals around the world. Through studying abroad in Thailand, I found this passion and will continue to pursue it.

What makes me a good leader is my ability to pull on people's strengths to create the best outcome the team is capable of producing. Additionally, I believe in leading by example. To inspire others to excel, I fully dedicate myself to the project as I would like them to do. Through Leadership Academy, I want to gain confidence as a leader and therefore have respect from the team I am leading.

Melissa Hui Weng Wong

My name is Melissa Wong and I am an international student from Malaysia. I am currently a senior expecting to graduate in Spring 2019 with a Bachelor's Degree in Food Science and Technology with a focus on Food Science and minors in Chemistry and Psychology. When I eventually leave university life and head out into the real world, I want to find a job that I feel comfortable working in and eventually work towards the sensory and marketing department. In the end, I want to open a restaurant of my own that serves comfort food for anyone to enjoy. Many qualities make up a good leader, and every good leader is comprised of different qualities. I believe a good leader knows how to maximize their strong qualities in a team and always give the team the support that they need. I hope to learn more about myself, see the strengths that others see in me but I don't, and learn how to be a respected and trusted leader from the Leadership Academy.

Mikaela Lea

I am from Brookings, Oregon; a small logging and coastal community. I am studying Natural Resources and Leadership. My concentration for my Natural Resources degree is a specialty option of Adventure Leadership and Education. There are a few things I'd like to do as careers. I’ve narrowed them down to Wilderness Therapy, Outdoors Education, and Wildland Firefighting. I believe these careers capture various passions of mine.

Being a good leader is situational, however there are certain characteristics that carry across the different leadership styles. Knowing when to step up, and when to step back. Having a good gauge of strengths and weaknesses of your followers. Strong personal morals.

Through the Leadership Academy, I would like to build on my strengths and strengthen my weaknesses. Growing alongside my cohorts, I hope to see others transform and learn from them.

Morgan Lyman

I am from Plymouth, CA and am a senior majoring in Animal Science with a Leadership minor. I am passionate about advocating for the agriculture industry as a whole, especially the beef industry. I hope to find an organization or company to work within, promoting the beef industry and telling its story. I am looking forward to the opportunities and experiences I will have this year to help me with this transition.

I think that good leaders are able to give and take feedback, are passionate and work hard with others, and are responsible to take action. I also think that good leaders are able to develop and grow within their roles.

While in the Leadership Academy, I hope to develop professional and leadership skills that will help me in my future career. I also hope to grow in my relationships and learn to work with others more effectively and efficiently. I am excited to work with my mentor throughout the year as they help me set and achieve goals.

Naomi Sakaguchi

My hometown is Tigard, Oregon and I am a senior majoring in Animal Science with a Pre-Vet option and a minor in Chemistry. After undergrad, I plan to attend Vet school to pursue a career in veterinary medicine. I have yet to decide whether to continue on into general practice or follow a passion into a specialty such as Internal Medicine or Oncology.

In my opinion, qualities that make a good leader include but are not limited to empathy, drive, respect, understanding and responsibility. A good leader sees what others excel in and uses their strengths to make themselves and their peers better through pursuing continued growth.

I hope to build relationships within the Leadership Academy cohort and build friendships with the other students as well as the faculty and mentors. I hope to gain both leadership and life skills from the people that I meet through this program.

Ruben Lopez-Carrillo

Tyler Gustafson

My name is Tyler Gustafson. I am from a small town named Yoncalla, about halfway between Eugene and Roseburg, OR. I am a Senior here at Oregon State University, with a major in Agricultural Business Management and a minor in Forestry. My long-term career goal is to own and operate a sustainable cattle ranch that can at least support my future family.

I believe a good leader is one that leads by example in all they do. I think this is more important than any other leadership quality. If a leader isn't leading by example and living in the ways they expect their followers to, they aren't really leading.

From Leadership Academy, I hope to hone the leadership skills that I am already gifted with, as well as develop new ones that will make me a more effective leader in the workplace and life after college. I want to be an effective and efficient leader in all areas of my life.

Tyler Kammeyer

I am from Estacada, OR and am a sophomore majoring in Agricultural Business Management and minoring in Communications. Although I cannot describe in great detail where I would like to see myself in the long-term, one thing I know for certain is that I will be working somewhere in the vast industry of agriculture, hopefully in either the financial, or banking sector.

I believe that a key distinguisher of a good leader is someone who is not leading for their own self gain but leading for the purpose of accomplishing a larger goal.

During my time in the Leadership Academy, I would love to see myself expand both my personal and professional network, learn from my peers, and improve on a range of leadership related skills that will not only help me in the work force, but also help me in my day to day interactions as well.

Victoria Adams

My name is Victoria Adams and I am a fourth-year senior studying Environmental Economics and Policy. Originally, I am from Anchorage, Alaska, although I moved to Oregon eleven years ago. Upon completing college, I hope to work in outreach for an environmental non-profit. My aptitude for organization, attention to detail, and work ethic help make me a good leader, but I believe a team is what makes their leader great. I hope to gain knowledge and resources surrounding leadership development and develop more professional skills throughout the course of the year.