Campus Voices: Sarah Coffey, agronomy
by Hannah Rogers
When it comes to protecting the environment and finding solution for our future, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences students are on the front lines.
Senior Sarah Coffey, a successful, hard-working and committed agronomy major, hopes to do just that as she pursues a career to restore and preserve the environment in Texas.
Coffey has not only maintained a 4.0 GPA during her time at A&M, but also was a member of the Texas A&M Soil Judging Team, the Student Chapter of the Soil Water and Conservation Society and served as Vice President of the Agronomy Society. Sarah was a 2012 Senior Merit Award Recipient. After graduation, Sarah would like to pursue a career in Soil Remediation or Environmental Consulting after receiving her certification as a Professional Soil Scientist.
During your undergraduate studies at Texas A&M, what led to your passion of the environment?
My experiences on the Soil Judging Team led to my passion for soils. Before attending Texas A&M, dirt was dirt and nothing more. As I learned more about the complexities and importance of soil, I became intrigued. Soil is a fundamental component of life on earth. In my experience few people understand the importance of soil and my goal is to use my knowledge and passion for soils to preserve the environment for future generations.
What kinds of hands-on learning experiences did you participate in while at Texas A&M?
I have worked in the Soil Microbiology lab on campus for almost four years and got experience with different research techniques. My summer internship at the Noble Foundation allowed me to conduct my own research project on herbicide tolerance of Bermuda grass in the eradication of field sandburs. Throughout my time at A&M, I have had so many hands-on experiences through courses in both the Soil and Crop Department and the Rangeland and Ecology Management courses that have really helped prepare me for what’s to come.
What is your intended career path and hopes with Environmental consulting?
I am hoping to pursue a career that will allow me to restore and preserve the environment. As the population continues to grow here in Texas, we are faced with many environmental challenges. It’s my hope that my career will allow me to protect and restore damaged land and provide education through consulting. Education is a very powerful tool for change, and through education I feel that our state can become a leading advocate for the land and soil that gives us life.
What events have prepared you for what you would like to pursue in the future?
Throughout my time at A&M, it’s been my goal to gain experience in a variety of disciplines. I have taken courses in soils, crops and rangeland ecology and management. My participation in the Agronomy Society has helped hone my skills as a leader. In addition to my courses and involvement on campus, I have completed three summer internships. My internships involved gaining experience in soil and crop research and consulting along with wildlife management and research.