By: John Krankota
December 13, 2022
First, I want to say thank you to the whole team at Torrey Advisory Group for welcoming me into their office and giving me the chance to learn about the world of agricultural policy. Thanks to my time here, I feel like I have progressed by leaps and bounds in my education and career. Starting college during the COVID-19 pandemic was tough; anyone else who has been in school the past few years can attest to that. Between online classes, stunted social activity, and the all-around uncertainty of the times, it has been difficult to find one’s footing as a student and pre-professional. I’m grateful that I was able to come to Torrey Advisory Group because it has completely reinvigorated my drive. I can’t wait to get back to my university and start exploring the next steps in my professional development. Thanks to this experience, I have realized a new interest in the world of agriculture, and I hope to turn this interest into a true passion.
As you might guess, during my time here in Washington I learned about politics and government. I also gained insight into how Congress functions by watching hearings and floor proceedings and became more familiar with congressional committees. It was fascinating to be here during the midterm elections, an experience that provided me with a much deeper understanding of how our democracy works. I feel like a more capable citizen, and I know for a fact that I will be a better equipped voter ahead of our 2024 presidential election. I hope that I can share some of this newfound understanding with my peers at home so that they feel more prepared to vote. In addition, after seeing how many issues Congress must consider on any given day, I’ve gained a greater appreciation for the proximity of state and local government. I’d like to get more involved in my local government because I can see that this is where the most immediate changes take place.
This internship was a great introduction to the policy and business side of agriculture and allowed me to see just how broad the subject can be. Before arriving here, I was worried that I wouldn’t fit in at an agricultural policy firm because I don’t have any background in farming. However, I quickly found that, while farming is the basis of agriculture, the industry goes far beyond production and touches every aspect of food, nutrition, and land use. Hopefully, I will soon be able to spend some time on a farm and get to know more about production. Before this internship, I never gave much thought to agriculture, but I have now realized that it’s the world’s most important industry, hands down. For people with a farming background, this is probably a given—but for me, this was a revelation. It’s so easy to go to the grocery store and load up on food without considering how it ended up there in the first place. I’m glad I had the chance to learn a little bit about the processes that get food to our tables, and I am excited to continue exploring this crucial aspect of our society. Thanks to my experience here, I have decided to shift the focus of my bachelor’s degree to agricultural business and study the economics that drive our access to food. I look forward to becoming part of Colorado State University’s well-respected College of Agricultural Sciences and I can’t wait to see what the program has to offer.
This internship was certainly a transformative experience for me, and I feel extraordinarily lucky to have had this opportunity. I would highly recommend that any student or young professional who has the chance to do an internship in Washington do so. Regardless of the organization or company, an internship here provides an unparalleled opportunity to learn about our country and government. Most of us have taken a civics or American government class at some point, and this experience takes that subject matter to the next level. Beyond that, it was amazing to be able to spend a few months in a different part of the country and experience life in the mid-Atlantic. I will always look back at my time here fondly and I hope that I can return sooner rather than later.