Hi, my name is Rebekah Veldboom, and I am the intern for Madison County’s SWCD this summer! I am originally from Williamsburg, IA and later Grinnell, IA, where my family and I moved so that my parents could begin co-farming with my grandparents. This fall I will be entering my senior year at ISU as an Environmental Science major, with a certificate in Soil Science and minor in Sustainability.
Although particularly uninterested in a career in or related to agriculture as a freshman, repeated course crossover and opportunities in the agronomy department quickly grew my appreciation and eventual fondness for agriculture and its relation to the environment. I was also introduced to the exciting world of research within my first semester – shout out to Dr. Hornbuckle! – and to the specific area of soils research in my sophomore year – shout out to the McDaniel Lab! Since then, I have been enjoying classes covering everything soils and picking up my own research projects!
Outside of classes, I have enjoyed various activities on campus. Over the past three years I’ve had the incredible privilege to be involved with the iconic Bells of Iowa State, by learning to play the carillon (aka the bell instrument), occasionally playing noon concerts in the Campanile (including The Fight Song!!), and leading the carillon student group. I’ve also enjoyed volunteering at ISU’s on-campus food pantry (The SHOP) and becoming involved with various ministries at my church as well as its recent installation of honeybees!
As I anticipate my graduation (in less than a year!), I look forward to completing my capstone research project – an exciting project studying the effects of bio digestate applications on enzyme activity in the soil – and taking more soils and conservation courses.
I’m excited to be with the Madison SWCD field office this summer and see land management and conservation practices in person!