As part of the centenary editions of the Angus Bulletins, we have been looking back at Angus Youth and seeing where they are now!
We check in with former Angus Youth member Laura Grubb to see where she is now!
What is your earliest memory participating in Angus Youth activities?
I was a late bloomer in the Angus world and first ventured across to the eastern states to attend the Dubbo Roundup in 2013 on a travel bursary from the WA state committee. This began a snowball effect with my involvement with Angus Youth.
What activity/event stands out to you the most (eg. Roundup, leadership clinic, scholarships etc)?
It is really hard to narrow down. The networks I have developed through Roundups are probably the most valuable. These people are now good friends, colleagues and mentors. Never would I have believed how much the people I met through Roundups have shaped me over the years. The beauty of Roundups is that it is accessible to everyone no matter your background or resources.
In terms of opportunities that you received for being part of Angus Youth, how did your involvement positively influence your development in the beef cattle industry?
There is no way I would be where I am today without the people I met and the soft skills I learnt through my time with Angus Youth. I would still have ended up in the beef industry, but I don’t think I would have progressed to where I am today without Angus Youth. My involvement with Angus Youth has opened doors that are not even available to most youth in the industry. The opportunities Angus Youth provides enable you to gain experiences that set you apart from other job candidates and provide access to a group of alumni who are prominent movers and shakers in the industry.
These alumni have become respected mentors, thought leaders and valued industry colleagues.
What were the key learnings you developed as a member of Angus Youth, through the program and then the additional scholarship experiences that you had?
I have been fortunate enough to receive numerous scholarships with Angus Youth. Most significantly the University of Illinois Scholarship. What I most gained out of this scholarship is the development of soft skills including, adaptability, communication, problem solving and the ability to transfer knowledge. This scholarship gave me the confidence in myself that I can be thrown out of my comfort zone and still thrive. This knowledge has helped me to back myself in many other situations in life. In addition, this scholarship allowed me to travel across the US viewing beautiful cattle, large processing plants and innovative feedlots as well as soak up knowledge from a large array of people.
How are you involved in the beef cattle industry now/where are you now?
I currently work for Teys Australia leading their producer engagement efforts. It is a very dynamic role that includes time on farm listening to producers and designing and facilitating extension programs, engaging with industry leaders to develop proactive ways in which to take the whole supply chain to the next level and keep consumers interested in and excited about quality beef.
Why would you encourage others to become involved in the Angus Youth Program?
If you are looking for a platform that can help you grow and gain skills from cattle handling to running meetings or even how to engage with industry leaders and policy makers, then you can’t go past Angus Youth. Angus Youth is all that you make it and if you take every opportunity then you can progress through the program and emerge confident with a suite of soft skills that set you up for a successful career, whatever that may be. And I can guarantee you will make a lot of great new friends and mentors. So don’t hold back, jump in and join the Angus Youth community!
Shelley Piper, Laura Grubb, the 2013 University of Illinois Scholarship winner and Angus Australia CEO Peter Parnell
Feature Image: Kate & Murk Schoen with Laura Grubb at the 2017 ARCBA Young Leaders Program