CSU, Chico

Alexis Bedoya, Crops, Horticulture, and Land Resource Management

Alexis Bedoya, Crops, Horticulture, and Land Resource Management

The fear of bees is formally known as melissophobia, but for senior crops, horticulture, and land resource management major Alexis Bedoya, that fear isn’t on her radar. In fact, when asked what her favorite extracurricular activity was, she said, “Honestly, I like to play with bees.”

Bedoya understands how vital honey bees are to the success of agriculture. After all, they are accountable for nearly 80 percent of all insect pollination. In line with her interest in bee keeping, her family started a bee pollination rental company called Bedoya Apiary based in her home town of Dixon, California. This May, the company will mark its one-year anniversary, and Bedoya has been involved since the beginning. 

It all started when Bedoya became interested in the bee business and proposed the idea to her family. “My dad essentially became the financial backer of the company and my idea,” said Bedoya. “It’s been a family affair ever since, and over the past year or so we’ve been building Bedoya Apiary from the ground up.” 

Bedoya was raised around the agriculture industry—her dad’s side of the family owns a large cattle ranch in South America. These agricultural roots led her to become a member of the 4-H and FFA. Bedoya was in 4-H from fourth grade until her sophomore year of high school, when her family moved to Dixon. In her junior and senior years of high school she was a member of the FFA through her school’s agriculture program. While in FFA, Bedoya showed beef cattle and market swine at the Dixon May Fair. After five years of showing cattle in both 4-H and FFA, she received a FFA beef proficiency award her senior year.

Bedoya came to California State University, Chico as a freshman in the fall of 2010. Her involvement in 4-H and FFA throughout high school led her to her search for colleges with strong agriculture programs. After touring the CSU, Chico campus, visiting the University Farm, and meeting teachers and staff, she was certain that she wanted to be a part of the CSU, Chico College of Agriculture.

Three years later, Bedoya still holds the same opinion of the College of Agriculture’s faculty and environment. “I love how open the College of Agriculture is,” said Bedoya. “Everyone you meet is willing to help you out no matter what. Professors such as Dr. (Betsy) Boyd are inspiring to students. She is extremely knowledgeable in whatever she is teaching us, and I always come out of her classes with a lot more knowledge that I did going into them.”

In the College of Agriculture, Bedoya is currently the president of the Crop Science and Horticulture Club. Members of the club attend the California Seed Tour, the California Association of Pest Control Advisors (CAPCA) conference, and monthly meetings where industry professionals visit as guest speakers. Speakers in the past have included local beekeepers, pest control advisors, and local farmers. As president, Bedoya facilitates the monthly club meetings, organizes fundraisers, and holds social events for the club’s members. Outside of the College of Agriculture, Bedoya is also a student member of the CAPCA. Through her membership, she lobbies at different CAPCA chapters for donations to the Crop Science and Horticulture Club. 

Bedoya has held numerous agriculture-related jobs since graduating high school. Her first job was volunteering at Jess Jones Vineyard in Dixon as a field assistant in charge of the upkeep of the vineyards. There she also was responsible for keeping an inventory and record of wine that was produced.

Her next job was with Farm Direct Produce, also in Dixon, in the summer of 2010. She was employed as an office assistant and provided administrative support, created daily invoices of cultivated produce, computed payrolls for employees, made bank deposits, and handled customer service. 

In the summer of 2012, Bedoya started working as a pest control advisor assistant for Growers Ag Service, where she still works during holiday breaks and on weekends when she can travel home. In this position, she walks fields and checks for pests, weeds, and disease. After finding a problem, she then consults a pest control advisor to determine the best mode of control for the specific issue. She also assists with writing secondary recommendations on Agrian, a technology-based tool that many pest control advisors use to submit recommendations for growers to review before the field is actually treated. 

Since August of 2012, Bedoya has worked for Noble Orchards in Paradise, where she handles customer relations, takes care of final sales transactions, and organizes the produce. In her spare time, she helps out with the family business by assisting with daily hive care and maintenance and organizing the hive placement and removal dates.

Upon graduation, Bedoya plans to obtain her pest control advisor’s license as well as a certified crop advisor’s license.  She then hopes to move home and continue to work for Growers Ag Service full time.