Matthew Poling knew he wanted to get his hands dirty during his college experience, with in-the-field learning to help him grow into a career in the agricultural industry.
For a moment, he worried he might not get that experience in college, but once he transferred to Iowa State, he found his hands calloused and his schedule full of real-life work experience.
“Growing up on a farm I was always busy, always working with my hands, and when my first university was all about theoretical learning, I knew I was in the wrong place.
When I got to Iowa State I was immediately thrown into the deep end, and it felt great! I knew I was academically in the right spot, and I wanted to get involved and really have the true Iowa State experience.
I joined the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers and the Dairy Science Club. By getting involved in these extracurriculars I was able to expand on what we were doing in class and connect with people of similar interests.
Being here in Ames has given me so many opportunities. I’ve been working for CLAAS, a manufacturer of agricultural engineering equipment, for three years and I’ll be working there full-time after graduation in May. I have also been able to work on a local farm just north of Polk City, and I love having those connections and understanding how the things I’m doing in class and at work impact the farmers that are using the tools we create.
At Iowa State I have found a community of peers, advisors and faculty who are all there to help me through whatever problem I may have.
Iowa State has become a home away from home, it feels good to be around people who are supportive and understand where I come from and where I want to go. I’m so happy with my decision to come to Iowa State and really roll up my sleeves and get into the world of engineering.”