Explaining agriculture from the ground up is all part of a day’s work for more than 130 Texas A&M University student interns at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™. The more than 35-year-old program allows agricultural communications and journalism students and other agriculture students to work for the Show’s marketing department, events and attractions, and executive office during its three-week run every March.
Aggie interns staff AgVenture, an interactive educational area designed to teach kids and their parents about agriculture. Aggie Interns handle basic animal care, answer endless questions about livestock, crops and food production, and help with a “Fun on the Farm” exhibit that lets children learn about where their food really comes from.
Aggie interns produce the Show’s daily and weekly newsletters that cover commercial exhibits (more than 300 vendors fill the Reliant Park facility during the Show),and write stories about the unique BP Superseries™ rodeo and even the occasional “best food” contest. Aggie interns identify story topics, cover grand and reserve champion selections and auctions, and take photos. After they finish each day’s newsletter, they head to Reliant Stadium to help with the show’s evening “Fan Zone” autograph session that attracts scores of fans. After the Rodeo winners are announced, the Aggie intern writers interview the cowboys and cowgirls and write a news release, and, the next day, get up and do it all again.
Aggie interns in the Show’s executive office answer telephones, run errands, oversee the daily meet-and-greet events with the Show’s headline entertainers, and generally make sure that the Show’s officers, donors and visitors are treated with care, respect, and efficiency.
They return every year
Aggie interns, many of whom have worked all four years during their undergraduate programs, receive high praise from the Show’s visitors, volunteers, staff members, and executives. Aggie interns are hard workers, eager to learn, and willing to do whatever it takes to help make this massive charity event a success. If you ask the Aggie interns why they participate, many will tell you it is about giving back for the Houston Livestock Show scholarship that helps with their school expenses. Others say they love telling people about agriculture, and they love working with their fellow Aggies.
How to Participate
The internship program is open to all students in good academic standing. Writing interns must have completed Media Writing I or the equivalent and be selected by Show staff members through an application process. Executive office interns are selected from among veteran interns.
For information or to find out how to sign up for the next Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Intern program, contact Dr. Deb Dunsford at firstname.lastname@example.org. Dr. Deb has been recruiting and assigning Aggie student interns, arranging for their transportation and lodging, and supervising them during their internship since 1995.