Carrots, Space and the Secret Service

By Irma Cervantes, Public Affairs Coordinator, CSUB

It started off as extra credit. But, Anish Mohan quickly learned that he would get a lot more than some extra points in class when he began talking to the folks at NASA.

“My economics teacher told me to come for extra credit,” said Mohan, who is a CSUB Freshman majoring in Business and Finance. “Then I talked to the NASA team and what they had to say really interested me. They have a learn-as-you-go program, and it can really help me get an internship early in my education career.”

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Mohan made contact with NASA at the first annual CSUB Ag Day Career Fair. Yes, Agriculture. So, why was NASA there?

“We heard about this event at CSUB and wanted to participate,” said Brian Bennet, Human Resources Specialist for NASA. “We have positions in accounting, education, business, engineering, both internships and entry level, and we feel that CSUB has a pool of students who are great candidates.”

But NASA wasn’t the only company on the hunt for new talent at CSUB’s Ag Day. Farming giants Grimmway, Bolthouse and Paramount Farms were also looking for trained graduates to keep up with the demand for its workforce here in the central valley – one of the largest agriculture regions in the nation.

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“As the world’s largest supplier of pistachios, we hire everything from agriculture and engineering, to business and economics,” said Lori Newlin, a recruiter with Paramount Farms. “We know that CSUB has majors in all those fields and here we can find successful students to fill those positions.”

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Dr. S. Aaron Hegde, Associate Professor of Economics and Director of the Environmental Resource Management Program at CSUB, helped organize CSUB AG day. He says normally, students would have to go as far as Monterrey or the Central Coast to gain access to a single event where they can network and connect with so many agriculture companies.

“It’s a surprisingly good turnout, we had over 100 students show up in the first hour,” said Hegde. “The demand for people is high and these companies know they can find many highly trained and educated students here at CSUB.”

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Even the CIA was in attendance looking for their next professionals right here in Bakersfield.

“I’m so surprised at the companies that are here that we can directly talk to,” said student April Hernandez. “The fact that they were able to get them all into one room at the same time at CSUB is simply amazing.”

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