Young Alum of the Month – July 2022

Rebekah Sletten (‘19 agricultural business, international agriculture), an Osage native, found her passion for agriculture at a young age.

“Growing up on my family farm was my first introduction to agriculture. The combination of that experience and the opportunity I had to participate in both 4-H and FFA helped me to expand my horizons of what opportunities there were in agriculture,” Sletten says.

The decision to attend the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Iowa State University was an easy choice for Sletten. “I knew I wanted to study agricultural business, and when you have one of the top programs in the world in your state, it makes sense,” Sletten says.

As a student at Iowa State, Sletten was involved with the student leadership team for what is now called Start Something College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, formerly known as the Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative. She says this experience has now come full circle for her as she serves as public affairs manager for America’s Cultivation Corridor.

“I knew I had a passion for helping entrepreneurs. Now, with the Corridor, I have the chance to work with entrepreneurs through our Cultivo Global Ag Innovation Program,” Sletten says.

She enjoys having the opportunity to work to promote the state of Iowa through her job. For Sletten, it is a privilege to get to share what innovations are happening within the state to attract companies, talent and capital from across the globe.

While she was also involved in several other student organizations at Iowa State, such as the Agricultural Business Club and National Agri-Marketing Association, she attributes the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Study Abroad Program as being the most impactful.

Sletten was able to travel abroad five times visiting eight different countries as a student. She says without the help of the college’s study abroad office and the scholarships they provide, these experiences would not have been possible.

“Having the opportunity to travel and see how agriculture looks around the world was truly an invaluable experience,” Sletten says.

She also commends Mike Gaul, director of Career Services for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, for his guidance and advice throughout her time at Iowa State. She encourages students to meet with him early in their college career and continue to stay in touch with him throughout their experiences at the university.

“The advice he (Mike Gaul) is able to share is priceless, and the guidance he gives in preparing both your resume and you for the career fair will set you above the rest. I firmly believe students who take advantage of the services offered by the Career Services office have a jump start on career success,” Sletten says.