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Archive for March, 2013

Join us for the “U.S. Agricultural Policy in a Global Context” Conference
on April 9, 2013 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Center in College Station, Texas!

To register for this FREE conference please go to http://afcerc.tamu.edu/outreach/APGCC_2013.html.

How does U.S. agricultural and food policy affect markets not only at home but across the globe? How other countries’ policies affect our own markets and our ability to maintain a viable food system?

Debated and forged in a uniquely American process every few years, U.S. agricultural policy impacts markets and the profitability of farming and the cost of food not only in this country but around the world. As we head into the debate on the next farm bill, both domestic and foreign pressures to reform U.S. agricultural policy in widely diverging ways are rapidly building. Can we craft a new farm bill that meets domestic needs while complying with our obligations under WTO? What aspects of the growing number of proposals to reform U.S. farm policy are likely to face challenges from Brazil, the European Union, China and other countries whose markets are tied increasingly closer to ours? How do the prolific agricultural policies of those countries affect our markets and inhibit our own ability to set policies that will effectively meet their goals? Distinguished U.S. and foreign experts on U.S. and global agricultural policies will debate the global context of U.S. agricultural policies in this important conference.

Tentative Program (9:00 am – 5:00 pm)

Morning Session:
• Welcome: Dr. Mark Hussey, Vice Chancellor and Dean
• U.S. Agricultural Policy Update: Dr. Joe Outlaw, Co-Director, Agriculture and Food Policy Center
• International Perspectives on U.S. Agricultural Policy: Dr. Silvia Miranda, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil; Dr. Bruno Guermonprez, Catholic University of Lille, France; Dr. Pei Guo, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China

• Lunch – Free to conference registrants

Afternoon Session:
• U.S. Agriculture perspectives on U.S. Agricultural Policy: Invited representatives of U.S. producer associations
• Panel Discussion on the Global Dimensions of U.S. Agricultural Policy: International speakers, representatives of U.S. producers groups, Dr. Joe Outlaw

For more information please go to http://afcerc.tamu.edu/outreach/APGCC_2013.html

Everyone is welcome so please share this email with anyone who would have an interest in the conference.

Sponsored By:
Agribusiness, Food, and Consumer Economics Research Center
Agricultural and Food Policy Center
Department of Agricultural Economics
Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Texas A&M University

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Ag Careers Newsletter

ACING AN INTERVIEW AND ANSWERING TRICKY QUESTIONS

by Elizabeth Stubbs, AgCareers.com Sales & Project Management Intern and University of Guelph Student

If it hasn’t happened to you when interviewing for internships or summer jobs, it is bound to happen soon … you’re going to get hit with tricky interview questions. We’ve all heard the horror stories: people caught off guard during a great interview with a question like, “If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?” A very common interview fear is sitting there at a loss for words. So why do interviewers ask such tricky questions? And how can you avoid muttering “Ummm” and “Ahhh” when they do? Outlined in this article are five simple steps for acing an interview and suggestions for answering those tough questions.

Calm down and don’t get flustered. Interviewers ask tough or silly questions to see how you’ll react. They really don’t care if you like cats or dogs or even elephants! They’re trying to see if they can catch you off guard or fluster you; to see how you handle unexpected situations in the workplace.

Take a second to compose yourself and don’t speak too soon. For any question you are asked, you can say “I need a moment to think about it.” When you do answer, you can say something along the lines of, “I like horses. They’re sturdy and they’re quick! I feel that I would be a dependable, stable employee who can work in a fast paced environment.” That will definitely do the trick.

Never in your job will you have to “be an animal” so it’s not a relevant question — make it relevant. Relate your answer back to the job and your work ethic. Fortunately, questions like these aren’t as common as some other tricky questions.

A very common style of interviewing is through behavioral based questions. They force you to give a real life example while thinking on the spot — you really have to dig deeper to give a good answer. The interviewer will give you a situation like: “Tell me about a time, in a work setting, where you had to take a strong stand for something you believe in.” Then you will be asked what the specific situation was, why it was so important to you, how you took a stand, and what the results or consequences were. This can be a very difficult and complex question to answer. Make sure you answer all of the parts of the question and don’t be afraid to ask the interviewer if you answered all of the points at the end of your response just to be sure.

Be honest and not negative. If you are asked about a difficult situation, whether you were “right” or “wrong” in the situation, you can put a positive spin on it. You can talk about issues you had with a previous job, but do not beat on it. That would send up red flags — interviewers do not want to hire someone who, down the road, might be in a similar position saying the same thing about their company.

The bottom line is, employers want to know if you:
Can communicate effectively.
Can apply technical skills and knowledge of concepts to solve real problems.
Are innovative and resourceful.
Are self-confident but not arrogant.
Are aware of your strengths AND weaknesses.
Have integrity.
Will embrace change.
Can welcome feedback.
Work well in a group setting as well as individually.
Are proactive in problem solving.
Want to learn and improve.

In knowing that these are the things employers want in a candidate, you can be confident and assured before you go into your interview, which will lead to easy communication and professionalism.

From the earlier research you did on the company in preparation for your interview, demonstrate how your values and what the organization stands for align. Show your interviewers that you would be a good fit because you stand for the same things, you have interest in the company and you are eager to learn more!

Now for the final step: At the end of your interview, summarize what you have gone over. Show the employer why there could be a mutual benefit of you being hired for the position — you would be a great addition to their company! Tell them that you look forward to a potential job offer, and thank them for their time. And remember: follow up with a thank you note or email!

A FEW TRICKY QUESTIONS WITH SUGGESTED ANSWERS

“What have you done to prepare yourself for a job of this type?”

This question can be tricky for recent grads because your work experience will be limited. What if you worked in agronomy every summer and are now using your ag. business degree to compete for an account manager trainee position at a large bank?
Be honest, tell them “I have not had a role like this in any of my past employment opportunities. However, I enjoy working with clients, I am proficient with computers, I maintain personal budgets for myself, and from the research I have gathered on the company I think I fit well with your values and you fit well with mine.”

“Tell me about a time when you succeeded in getting someone to go along with something he or she was originally opposed to doing. How did you go about influencing this person?”

FYI: this is not the time to tell the story about how you got your younger sibling to do something silly for the entertainment of you and your friends!
Your interviewer wants to hear about a time when you were excited about a project at work or school and that you convinced others that it would be good to start up or work on; something that turned out well. Once again, this can be tough for new graduates without much work experience.
You can talk about group work in class and how you led the team in a direction that enabled you to geta great grade.
The interviewers want to know about when you used your initiative and leadership qualities to make a positive impact.

“Tell me about a time that you had difficulty with a particular task or project because you lacked the necessary skills.”

This is tough; no one wants to admit they have weaknesses or don’t possess all the skills necessary to do their job properly. But there is nothing wrong with being humble and admitting where you need improvement yet stating that you would love to learn more and do better.
This is where being self-confident but not arrogant comes in. Employers will appreciate the honesty in your answer, as well as the initiative you are willing to take to do better.

“Describe yourself in one word.”

This is short and to the point. But there are so many good qualities about yourself that you want to highlight, so much you want to say.
In advertising, the shorter the message the longer it sticks. So, above everything else you say in your interview, what do you want to stick most about you? This one word could define you to your interviewers.
Take a minute, think about it, and give an answer that you would like to have remembered.

“Is work the most important thing in your life?”

You may think that your interviewer wants you to automatically say “yes.” But if work really is the most important thing in your life you may not be the candidate that they’re searching for.
They will want a dedicated employee who loves what they do. However, they will also want a well-rounded individual who knows how to prioritize, who is socialized, and who has various interests.
Work is important, but this is a leading question. They want to be sure you’ll be a good fit with the company and its current employees.
Tell them you are a dedicated employee and that you’d love to work for their company, but be honest, tell them what else is important to you as well.

So when you are interviewing for that dream job, just relax. Do some research before hand, get a good rest the night before, put your best clothes on, and ace that interview! Remember to stay positive, be honest, and give yourself time to think before answering those tricky questions!

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New Produce Jobs

New Produce Jobs Availiable!

From: JoeProduce.com
Date: March 19, 2013, 6:31:59 AM CDT
To: Marco
Subject: New Produce Jobs
Reply-To: JoeProduce.com

Hiring at Grand Ave Produce, Backyard Farms, Sensitech, Crystal Valley, Spiech Farms, Royal Produce, Marengo, and New Referral Rewards positions!
View this email in your browser.
New Job Alerts! Here are the latest from Joe Produce. Pass this along to anyone in the produce industry looking for a job or people.

Earn Money with Referral Rewards!
See a job listing on JoeProduce.com that you think is perfect for someone you know?
You can earn up to $1000!

PM Warehouse Manager and Assistant Manager Job Description:
Grand Avenue Produce Company is a family-owned company, with second and third generations involved with the running of the company. We are a progressive, team-oriented company with its roots deeply planted in tradition. The PM Warehouse Manager position will be responsible for overseeing 20-25 personnel. You will organize trucks to be loaded, orders to be pulled, receiving product and shipping early customer orders all following Grand Avenue Produce Company Inc. protocol. This shift starts at 6pm-7pm and is followed through to completion 5am- 6am. The position will also require some routing responsibility and input. You will also be responsible for tracking items that may be a special order or short so they can be ordered to get delivery trucks out in a timely fashion to our customers. Constant training of employees will be necessary for consistency and efficiency.

Grower Job Description:
If you are a leader who has a passion for plants and you are ready to work with frontrunners in agriculture, Backyard Farms is looking for you! Backyard Farms, the premier quality producer of year-round greenhouse tomatoes in New England, is seeking a qualified candidate in the position of Grower. Reporting directly to the Director of Production/Head Grower this position is ideal for someone who is a self-motivated, hands-on with excellent organizational and communication skills. Knowledge of growing commercial crops in a greenhouse environment, strong technical skills as well as demonstrated leadership abilities is highly desirable. Through integrated thinking, Backyard Farms has led the tomato industry in quality since the harvest of our first tomatoes in 2007. The right person for this position will be part of a team dedicated to continuous improvement with an eye for detail and a commitment to quality. In this position, the Grower is responsible for the achievement of strategic plan goals of management. The Grower will work in a fast-paced dynamic environment and promote sound judgment and respectful presentation of Backyard Farms to the employees, public and upper management.

Sales Acct. Manager – Food Division Job Description:
Sensitech, Inc., a business unit of Carrier Corp. and a worldwide leader in cold chain solutions is hiring a Sales Account Manager for the California Sales Team. This position will be based in the Watsonville/Salinas area.

Sales Person Job Description:
Crystal Valley West, Inc. is looking for a motivated and experienced salesperson in the produce business to help us expand our Los Angeles-West Coast distribution center. The candidate must be committed in growing and expanding our current business and have current retail and wholesale business (national and regional) experience. Successful candidates must be able to bring in new accounts to generate sales. We offer an excellent salary and benefits package. To apply please submit resume and cover letter.

Operations Manager/GFSI Coordinator Job Description:
We’re seeking a Operations Manager/GFSI Coordinator who will be responsible for overall operations which includes the Spiech Farms facility and its growers’ food safety requirements. This person will directly oversee the functions of box making and container labeling, packinghouse, shipping and receiving, and product quality control. This person will also be responsible for the maintenance of the facility and equipment, and the monitoring of personnel and the food safety programs and processes.

Sales Representative Job Description:
Royal Produce Sales Company is an onion wholesale company looking to fill a new Sales Representative position. Qualified applicants will be highly motivated self-starters who possess excellent communication skills and excellent planning and follow-through skills. We are looking for a candidate who is detail-focused, organized and understands the importance of ensuring customer satisfaction.

Fresh Produce Sales Assistant Job Description:
Marengo Foods Company, LLC was formed in August of 2009 as a partnership between three well-established growers. This partnership was the result of continuous improvement studies and statistical analysis that showed us the need to come closer to our customers in order to bring the freshest and safest product to the consumer and also the need to do this in the most efficient and cost effective way. We’re currently seeking to hire a Fresh Produce Sales Assistant in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. If you are bilingual in English and Spanish and ready to work in a fast-moving environment, we want to hear from you. We offer a generous benefits package for the right candidate.

Sales and Marketing Assistant Job Description:
Are you a multi-tasker with great people and computer skills? Can you sell? Are you detail-oriented and do you have exceptional follow-up skills? Do you want to be in Fresh Produce Sales and Marketing? Are you interested in working for an entrepreneurial company? If you are all these things, we want to hear from you. This is an entry-level position that can develop into something greater in the future. iFresh is a sales and marketing company that represents fresh produce companies. We market both domestically and internationally. This is a great opportunity for someone who wants to learn various facets of the produce business in a smaller company setting.

Outside Sales Representative Job Description:
A nationally-recognized produce company has an immediate opening for an Outside Sales Rep in California. We’re looking for candidates with experience, knowledge and passion. We offer generous benefits and competitive salary. This position is responsible for building and enhancing strong relationships with our suppliers. The responsibilities include managing all financial aspects of our program, communicating and educating all people at the supplier about all aspects of our services, and ultimately influencing the behavior of the supplier positively towards our program. This individual is the primary source of information about the supplier and responsible for communicating effectively to all internal departments. Qualified applicants will be highly motivated self-starters who possess excellent communication skills and excellent planning and follow-through skills. We are looking for candidates who are detail-focused, organized, and understand the importance of ensuring customer satisfaction.

Production Repack Manager Job Description:
A well-established produce company is seeking an experienced Production Repack Manager to join our team in California. This individual will be responsible for managing our repacking facility and for quality control procedures, including compliance with FDA, HAACP and other food quality regulations.

Confidential – Central California Transportation Manager Job Description:
We’re a produce distributor looking for a Transportation Manager at our central California location. We have a passion for produce and our goal is to help our customers succeed by maintaining our reputation as a forward-looking company. We have developed the best available quality produce, harvested and packed according to the highest standards. If you have the qualities we are seeking for this position, we hope to hear from qualified and experienced candidates for this great new opportunity in California!

Sales Manager Job Description:
A dynamic and growing nationwide produce company is looking for a highly motivated produce professional to join our team on the West Coast. We’re offering a very competitive salary and benefits package for the right candidate, plus plenty of opportunity in a company with a great reputation, top-notch team, and enviable work environment. Send us your resume if are a strong leader and creative problem-solver who can manage our Sales team and increase our sales. The Sales Manager will be responsible for increasing sales by marketing and selling to customers including actionable recommendations and fast solutions to client requests. The Sales Manager will also be accountable for developing and maintaining customer relationships, and will possess the ability to lead and motivate the sales team and ensure cross department communication. The Sales Manager will have the ability to educate others about marketing plans to ensure company continuity.

Sales/Director of Quality Job Description:
We are a family-owned and operated grower, shipper, and packer of vegetables based in California’s San Joaquin Valley. With more than 60 years of success, we continue to use progressive and innovative thinking and business methods to remain a top supplier within the industry. We are currently seeking an experienced and self-motivated sales professional who can handle day-to-day sales of the Company in addition to helping expand Company sales.

Confidential – Texas Great New Positions in Management, Shipping, and Receiving Job Description:
We are a successful worldwide marketer, grower and packer looking for talented people to join our team! We offer a comprehensive benefit program to all of our employees. We look forward to hearing from qualified candidates.

If you would like more information on any of these job positions, visit http://joeproduce.com/jobs. This website will give you more information such as qualifications, duties and responsibility, and who the position reports to.

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COMPANY:
PURA VIDA FARMS

Pura Vida is a grower/shipper of produce based in Scottsdale, AZ.

JOB FUNCTION:
Summer 2013 Internship (Paid)

DESIRED START DATE:
May 1, 2013

GENERAL QUALIFICATIONS:
Applicants must:
•Be organized and have the ability to work efficiently and independently
•Have strong Microsoft Office skills (Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint)
•Have strong communication skills, written and oral
•Work well in teams, as well as be able to receive constructive feedback
•Enjoy a fast paced environment and be able to multitask
•Have a passion for food and produce

Through this internship, you will have an opportunity to learn about the produce industry and get a first-hand introduction into produce sales. Applicants should expect to spend approximately 40 hours per week working in our Scottsdale office.

CONTACT INFORMATION:
Employer: Pura Vida Farms
Name: Mr. Chris Elsie
Title: President
Address: 7373 E. Double Tree Ranch Road Suite B-180
Scottsdale, AZ 85258

Pura Vida Internship

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Donna, Fred, and Pam–
Job positions available from Mike Gilmore of the Morehouse Management Group, Inc.

Dr. Capps
Oral Capps, Jr
Regents Professor
Executive Professor
Co-Director, The Agribusiness, Food, and Consumer Economics Research Center
Southwest Dairy Marketing Endowed Professor
Department of Agricultural Economics

It’s been a while since we’ve talked and I trust everything has been going your way. If you recall, I contacted you a year ago in regard to an Ag lending position I had in the Beaumont area. Now I have two, one in Nacogdoches and the other in Tyler.

Again, if you know of someone I should contact, please let me know. I could certainly appreciate it. I have attched more information on each job opening and the areas.

Nacogdoches
Loan Officer Nacogdoches 2013

Tyler
Loan Officer Agriland Tyler 2013

Thanks so much,

Mike Gilmore
Executive Bank Recruiter
MOREHOUSE MANAGEMENT GROUP, INC.
O: 318-283-4303 C: 318-282-7222
10550 Williamsburg Lane Bastrop, La 71220
mikegilmore1@att.net http://www.linkedin.com/in/mikegilmore1

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Please share with any listserv, email distribution or students you deem appropriate. If you’d like to make a direct referral for a student within your college, please feel free to do so. Looking for Transfer Student Peer Mentors to assist transfer students with their academic adjustment into Texas A&M University.
For more information and to apply see the following attachement,
TSPM Job Description

Thanks for your time.

Valerie Coleman
Program Coordinator
Office of the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Studies
Texas A&M University

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Good afternoon!
Honors & Undergraduate Research announces a call for proposals for the Undergraduate Research Scholars program for the 2013-14 academic year. To qualify the Scholars program, students must be currently involved in or planning a suitable undergraduate project under the mentorship of a Texas A&M Faculty Advisor. Students must have completed at least 60 hours of undergraduate courses with at least 24 hours at Texas A&M. Students should also have and maintain a Texas A&M GPR of 3.0 or higher. Alternatively, if you are in a group of 2-4 students who are working as a team on a larger overall project, or similar but related projects, please consider applying as an Undergraduate Research Scholars Team.

• The goal of the Scholars Program is to encourage motivated undergraduates to participate actively in research/scholarly projects and to give them the opportunity to communicate their findings as principal authors to the university’s scholarly community. Scholars successfully completing the Scholars Program will be recognized at graduation and on their transcript as an Undergraduate Research Scholar.

Interested in learning more about the Undergraduate Research Scholars program? Dr. Duncan MacKenzie, Associate Director for Undergraduate Research in the office of Honors and Undergraduate Research, will describe the scope of the Scholars program, the procedures for applying, and the expectations for successful completion. If you are interested in becoming an Undergraduate Research Scholar or you are a faculty member interested in mentoring a Scholar, come hear about the program.

Please plan to attend one of two Scholars Informational Sessions:

• Tuesday, March 19th from 5:30-6:30 Memorial Student Center, room 2406B
Sign up at https://academicevents.tamu.edu/hur/event/undergraduate-research-scholars-informational-1

• Monday, March 25th from 5:30-6:30 Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Building Auditorium

Sign up at https://academicevents.tamu.edu/hur/event/undergraduate-research-scholars-informational-2

For more information, see http://honors.tamu.edu/Research/Requirements.html The spring application deadline is April 15, 2013 at 5 p.m.

Questions? Contact Ms. Tammis Sherman at ugr@tamu.edu

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