CSU, Chico

Derek Eid, Agriculture Business

Derek Eid, Agriculture Business

Derek Eid did not grow up in agriculture. He didn’t raise animals for 4-H, nor did he participate in FFA in high school. The Sacramento-area native never even thought about a career in agriculture until it came time to transfer from Sierra College in Rocklin, where he earned an associate degree in criminal justice.   “Sitting in a cubicle for the rest of my life is just not what I had in mind,” Eid said. “Some friends introduced me to the career possibilities in agriculture, and it was appealing to me because I like the outdoors.”

In the fall of 2011, Eid joined the campus Associated Students Sustainability Collaborative internship program, where he worked for seven months. The internship gave him experience in promoting sustainability and green efforts on campus. He worked on projects including the seventh annual This Way to Sustainability Conference, which hosts more than 100 speakers and 1,400 participants at Chico State. One of his roles was to find "green" companies to participate in the conference, an experience that helped shape his career aspiration to work on the marketing or sales end of sustainable agriculture. 

Eid has taken advantage of every opportunity offered to him in the College of Agriculture. He is the current president of the Society of Agricultural Managers and represents the club on the Inter Club Council. He has been a member of several competitive traveling teams, beginning with the Distribution Research Society's National Student Food Marketing Competition in Puerto Rico in October. In December, he competed on the winning Young Farmers and Ranchers Collegiate Discussion Meet team in Pasadena. He will finish off his competitive college career with the Western Collegiate Food Marketing Competition in March and the Academic Quiz Bowl this summer. 

Eid also co-chaired the sales competition for the FFA Field Day and volunteered at the Up 'til Dawn fundraiser for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital during his junior and senior years. In addition to his extracurricular activities and responsibilities as a full-time student, Eid manages a local sandwich shop, where he has worked for several years.   

Participating in so many different teams and activities takes time and commitment, but Eid sees it as well worth the extra effort. "I'm glad I got the exposure on a national level and had the chance to network with so many other people, whether it was students from different universities or people in the agricultural industry."

Upon graduation in May, Eid will pursue what he calls a "green" position in marketing and sales. He plans to return to graduate school after traveling and getting some experience in the workforce.  Ultimately, Eid can see himself in a career that is involved in the green movement within the agricultural industry, and he someday hopes to start a small farm of his own.

Eid feels he made the right decision in choosing to major in agricultural business at Chico State. "Everyone in the College of Agriculture at Chico State is so open and inviting," Eid said. "It has really become like home."

(February, 2013)