(From left to right: Interns Brandon Schiefelbein, Thomas Schmitt and Ben Witt)
About Anez Consulting:
Located in Little Falls, Minnesota, Anez Consulting provides independent crop consulting, working with farmers as an unbiased information source for soil fertility.
Brandon Schiefelbein is a native of Kimball, Minnesota and an agriculture major at South Dakota State University. He spent his summer interning with Anez where he analyzed post-emerge corn and soybeans/stand counts and helped plant test plots.
Anez wasted no time giving Schiefelbein the hands-on experience he was looking for. He recalled how during the first week of his internship he was already working in the field which, in the agtech industry, means a literal farm field, after dark, laying plots by the light of their headlamps.
“90 percent of our internship was spent in an actual field,” confirmed Thomas Schmitt, a Minnesota native studying agriculture at North Dakota State University and fellow Anez intern.
For most of his internship, Schmitt collected soil samples, tested soil fertility, and helped with field scouting. Schmitt traveled a lot during his first month, delivering product to customers all over Minnesota. “For me, that’s what ag is all about,” he said, “and there’s nothing else I’d rather do.”
Crop consulting takes to the sky
The Anez Consulting takes its internship experience to the next level by using drones to assist with its field inspections. As a result, the interns were able to add drone piloting to the skills they developed over the summer.
Schmitt used the Anez drones to scope out drown-out spots in Southern Minnesota. Schiefelbein used them to get an aerial view of test plots, to check on the hybrids planted there and see which ones were taking. The interns had a lot of fun with this, they said. Making sound effects as the drones came down was a common occurrence.
Ben Witt, also an agriculture major at North Dakota State, is a second year intern with Anez, having worked for the agtech company the summer prior. This year he focused on weed identification, alfalfa sampling and aphid scouting. Coming back to work with the company, he says, “is a big confidence booster. I can build off the relationships I developed the year before.”
This summer, Witt got to represent Anez Consulting on air for the local radio segment, Anez Consulting’s Pro Tip of the Week. Here’s an example of one of his regular updates:
Apart from his five minutes of fame, Witt says the most fulfilling part of an internship like this is the “pride of having accomplished a long week of work. It’s something to hang your hat on.”
For ag students like Witt, Schmitt and Schiefelbein, time spent in the field is crucial to the learning and working experience they expect from an agriculture and agtech internship.
“It’s in my blood to farm,” Schiefelbein said, and it’s safe to say his fellow interns would agree.
With at least 350 wage matches available through the end of 2019, influential internship experiences like these are easy to come by.