CSU, Chico

Clarissa Rowley, Agriculture Education

Clarissa Rowley, Agriculture Education

Clarissa Rowley

After a quick tour of campus, senior Agriculture Science and Education major Clarissa Rowley was sold on all that California State University, Chico had to offer. Originally from Turlock, Calif., Rowley graduated from Pitman High School and attended Modesto Junior College, receiving an associate's degree in Agribusiness in fall 2008. "I visited the campus and totally pictured myself going there," said Rowley as she recalls her decision to join the College of Agriculture.

While maintaining an impressive GPA, Rowley has managed to be an active student within the college. She currently serves as the reporter for the professional agriculture education fraternity, Alpha Tau Alpha and is a member of Ag Ambassadors and Alpha Zeta. Rowley can also be found completing her directed work hours at the University Farm's Crops Unit. In addition, Rowley received her artificial insemination certification through Dr. Cindy Daley's reproductive physiology class, adding to her notable list of qualifications.

"Chico State has given me a multitude of opportunities to become involved and develop my knowledge and skills within the agriculture industry-not only the hands-on skills I developed throughout class labs and directed work at the University Farm, but also my facilitation and public-speaking skills throughout my involvement in the ag ed program and from volunteering to put on workshops and team-building events with ATA and Ag Ambassadors," said Rowley.

When asked to identify a few key individuals who have been influential, Rowley stated, "Everyone. I know it sounds cliché, but everyone that I've met throughout my experiences at Chico State has influenced me in some way." More specifically, one faculty member that came to mind was Dr. Brad Dodson, an associate professor in ag education. "Dodson has helped me become more comfortable with the idea of teaching and has played a major role in preparing me for the classroom," said Rowley.

"I am the first person in my family to graduate from college, so the whole college experience is new to me and my family," said Rowley. She attributes much of her success at Chico to the faculty and staff who have helped guide her through the college experience and learn about all aspects of agriculture.

If she isn't in class, working in the crops unit, or participating in various college of ag events, Rowley can be found taking it easy, "hanging out with friends, reading, listening to music, going to concerts, watching movies, baking, and sometimes working out." A talent that many of us would envy, Rowley confesses her ultimate hobby: "I've been making duct tape wallets out of random-colored duct tape since my sophomore year of high school."

After graduation, Rowley will be entering the Credential Program at Chico State. "I want to get a few years of teaching under my belt, but eventually I would love to get my master's and even possibly my doctorate," said Rowley. Looking 10 years down the road, Rowley hopes to find herself teaching, with a family and a few acres.