Explain your career path
After graduation I worked for ACI Distributors in St. Charles, MO selling farm equipment to dealerships from Florida to Texas to Iowa for a little over a year. After marrying my wife I moved to Arkansas while she finished her last year of college and I worked as a Night Man for Capstone Treatment Center. It is in Arkansas where myself and a high school friend of mine came up with the idea to start Jackson Egg Company. We started in May 2016 and been growing ever since.
What was your major at Southeast and what led you to that?
Agriculture Business:Industry. I grew up on a farm and wanted to stay in the industry.
Why did you choose to attend Southeast?
It was close to home. Once I arrived at Southeast Missouri State I realized what I gem it was.
Who influenced you most during your time at Southeast?
My friends and Dr. Julie Weathers. Both encouraged me in different ways and pushed me in areas I would normally settle.
Share your best college memory.
My best memories were test days for Dr. Weathers animal nutrition class. A few friends and myself would arrive on campus around 6am and study for a few hours before the class at 8am so it was fresh in our minds. I would always bring some coffee and some donuts which makes everything better.
What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Southeast?
That putting in the hours isn’t enough. Really anybody can work for 16 hours a day and try to brag about how much they worked. It’s about being efficient with your time and focus on what matters so that you can continually move forward and not be spinning your tires going nowhere
Describe Southeast in three words.
Welcoming, fun, memorable
What is your greatest professional accomplishment?
Starting my own business and getting our product in Dierbergs in St. Louis, MO.
How did your education at Southeast prepare you for what you are doing today?
Our professors spoke a lot about how agriculture is different and taught us in such a manner. I appreciated that it was more than lectures and homework. We toured businesses, spoke with local professionals, and learned about managing people. I don’t remember a class where I felt like I was wasting my time.
What advice would you give current students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?
It’s all about knowing people. College is the perfect place to gain advice, meet new people, and gain connections for the future. Make relationships with as many people as possible while they are willing to help. As you grow people are less willing to help but while you’re in college everyone is willing to help you out.
What do you wish you had known before graduating and entering the "real world"?
Nothing is as easy as it seems. Starting a new business is difficult. It easy to remember the success stories and to dismiss the times they say it was hard. Remember things will be difficult before they become easy.