About This Issue
We would be remiss here at The Animal Science Monitor if we didn’t include pet and companion animals in our newsletter. To that end, November is “Pet/Companion Animal Month” in The ASM. But that’s not all that’s unique about this issue. Not only do we have advice about adding to your base of skills for the purpose of making yourself more valuable, we also recommend attending an upcoming industry conference . . . for the purpose of making yourself more successful. We hope that you enjoy this issue of The ASM, and as always, thanks for your loyal readership.
Dan & Don
Introducing The ASM ‘Video Link of the Month,’ Part I
We at The Animal Science Monitor are pleased to report that our “Video Link of the Month” feature has become quite popular with readers. So popular, in fact, that we’re going to have two this month, one in this issue and one in the next. But even more than that, we’ve also created a page dedicated to the video links that readers have submitted to us during the time this feature has been part of The ASM. To access this new page, click here.
The initial part of our two-part video series this month involves the efforts of Americans for Medical Progress. First and foremost, AMP would like to showcase their video titled “Touring Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Animal Research Facility,” which you can access by clicking here.
In addition, earlier this year Americans for Medical Progress launched “Veterinarians Speaking for Research,” the second in a series of free educational DVDs designed to help share information about the ongoing importance of animal research. While the entire video runs over 25 minutes, AMP is offering segmented portions of the DVD for viewing online. In order to view segments of “Veterinarians Speaking for Research,” visit the AMP’s “Raising Voices” channel on YouTube (www.YouTube.com).
Also, if you’re interested in acquiring a high-resolution copy of “Veterinarians Speaking for Research,” please contact Kristen Bocanegra, Vice President of Americans for Medical Progress. She can be reached at (703) 836-9595, Ext. 101. In the next issue of The ASM, we’ll present the second part of our “Video Link” series for November. The video in question will be “Managing in High Commodities,” as featured on The Cattle Show.
Remember, we want you to send us your favorite animal science video clips. Send an email, with your link included, to email@example.com, and your clip might be featured in a future issue of the newsletter. If your clip is included, we’ll also publish your name as its contributor. We’d like to thank everybody who’s sent us video links so far, and we encourage you to send us more in the future!
Visit the ‘Graduate Programs Section’
at Animal Science Jobs
At The Animal Science Monitor and Animal Science Jobs (www.AnimalSciencejobs.com), we’re constantly striving to provide the most pertinent and up-to-date information possible. With that in mind, we’d like to announce the release of our new “Graduate Programs Section,” which is located on the Animal Science Jobs Web site.
The section has two parts. The first part is a list of the graduate programs in animal and veterinary science, while the second is a list of the universities that offer veterinary programs. Each list is in alphabetical order, making it easier to search for specific schools and programs. A link to the website of each graduate school program is also located beneath the name of the university.
Our new “Graduate Programs Section” is just one of many reasons to visit the Animal Science Jobs website. In addition to a comprehensive events calendar, there’s a “Career Tips” and “Recruiting Tips” section, as well. Employers can also post their job openings to the site, and job seekers can view these job postings, submit or update their resume, or set up a Hot Job Alert and be notified via email when an opening of interest becomes available.
Of course, if you don’t see your graduate program (or its website link) included in our new section, please send us your information. We’d be glad to publish it on the Animal Science Jobs website, as well as in The ASM. You can send your information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your ASM Calendar of Upcoming Industry Events
At The Animal Science Monitor, we’re advocates of continuous education and the promotion of industry events such as conferences and conventions. The training and networking opportunities that exist at these events are extremely valuable and can pay dividends in a number of different ways.
That’s why we run a regular column devoted to upcoming events in the animal science and animal nutrition industries. As always, we value your input. If there’s an industry event that you believe we should promote through our newsletter, please email your information to email@example.com.
The ASM is pleased to highlight these upcoming industry events:
National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) Country Elevator/Feed Industry Conference
Date: Sunday, December 7 through Tuesday, December 9
Location: Marriott Renaissance Grand Hotel in St. Louis, Missouri
Description: This is one of the most popular yearly conferences dealing with country elevators and feed mills. For managers, merchandisers, operations employees, and others, the conference is chock-full of business ideas that you can take home and implement immediately. The program features sessions that provide business value for both the grain and feed sectors. In addition, the conference’s in-depth programming and Q&A format will allow registrants to explore important issues in detail.
Registration: In order to access complete pricing, registration, and hotel reservation information, click here.
I Hope to See You at the Penn State Dairy Nutrition Conference
(By Dan Simmons)
As most of you know, we practice what we preach here at The Animal Science Monitor. We’re big advocates of attending events such as industry conferences and conventions, and that’s why we attend them, too. In fact, there are two that I attend every year. One is the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference (MANC) in the spring, and the other is the Penn State Dairy Nutrition Conference in the fall.
The second of these two events is happening tomorrow, Wednesday, November 12 at the Holiday-Inn in Grantville, Pa. The conference is scheduled to run on Wednesday and Thursday of this week. (However, as we noted in the previous issue of The ASM, there’s also a “Feed Management Planner Symposium,” which is occurring today, before the official start of the conference.)
The Penn State Dairy Nutrition Conference has always been a great networking and training event, and I expect more of the same this year. No matter who you are or what capacity you fill within the industry, networking is an excellent way in which to not only make contacts and create new relationships and friendships, but also to acquire crucial information about industry trends and activities from other people in an informal fashion. Knowledge transfer doesn’t happen only inside the walls of the seminar room; it also happens in the hallway before and after the session . . . or at another venue unrelated to the actual conference proceedings.
If you’re attending the Penn State Dairy Nutrition Conference, be sure to arrive with a “networking frame of mind,” intent on meeting and speaking with as many people as you can. Of course, I’d like to be on your list of networking contacts. Send me a quick email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can arrange a time to meet during the conference. I would be happy to discuss the job market, your career aspirations, or your suggestions for The Animal Science Monitor.
A few conference tips . . .
I’ve attended quite a few conferences in my day, and I’ve learned that preparation is the key to a successful event. With that in mind, below are some tips for attending industry events. (I’ve presented these before in The ASM, but they most certainly bear repeating.)
- Print out the agenda—After you do that, identify which sessions you want to attend. Set up an “agenda within the agenda,” one that’s specific to you and targeted to your needs.
- Bring business cards—You definitely don’t want to be stuck in a situation where you need to pass out a business card, but don’t have any. So bring more than what you think you’ll need. That usually turns out to be just enough.
- Compile a list of people you’d like to meet—I can help you with this one. Write down the name “Dan Simmons.” See? Everybody should have at least one name on their list.
- Wear comfortable shoes—Yes, you’ll be sitting for some sessions, but you’ll be standing and walking the majority of the time.
- Bring a sweater—You never know how warm (or cold) the conference rooms are going to be. The best bet is to be prepared for any clothing contingency.
Don’t forget certification
Also keep in mind that there will be many certification opportunities at the conference, as well. For a breakdown of those opportunities, click here to access the information we published in our previous issue of The ASM (“In Focus: The Penn State Dairy Nutrition Conference”).
If you’re in the Grantville area, this is definitely an event you should consider attending. It’s not too late. Registration at the door for the two-day conference is $110. For more information about the event, including the full agenda and directions to the Holiday- Inn, click here or call Colleen Jones at (540) 997-5809.
As always, I want to thank you for being a loyal reader of The ASM, and I hope to see you soon!
Loading Up Your Employee Toolbox
(By Don Hunter)
I’m sure that most of you have heard the expression, “Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket.” That expression can have many applications to everyday life . . . and it can also apply to your career, as well.
That’s because in any job market, it’s wise to offer an employer—your current employer or a potential one—a diverse set of skills. While it’s true that a person should continually hone and cultivate the things they do well in an attempt to master them to the fullest, it’s also true that the more skills you possess, the more valuable you become to an employer.
A peek inside the box
Let’s use the analogy of a toolbox, one that represents the skills and abilities, and thus the value, that you possess as an employee. Like any toolbox, you can control the number of tools that are inside, as well as the type of tools. For our purposes, though, there are two types of tools that an employee brings with them to any position—the tangible and the intangible.
- Tangible tools—These involve specific skills associated with your job description, and they’re tied directly to the activities in which you’re engaged on a daily basis. More than likely, they’re also the ones that you chose to include on your resume.
- Intangible tools—These involve skills that aren’t necessarily located on your resume, but nonetheless, are important to employers who are seeking a well-rounded employee. They might include a person’s ability to work with others, their aptitude for creative problem-solving, or their knowledge of the industry and the company for which they work.
In a perfect world, you’d have a healthy balance of both tangible and intangible tools inside your employee toolbox. What employers are really looking for (not to mention willing to pay for) are employees who not only specialize in a particular skill set, but also possess other abilities and talents that involve a variety of disciplines.
So . . . what’s in your toolbox?
There’s a great commercial for credit card company Capital One. It’s a series of commercials, actually, and the tag line for this series is, “What’s in your wallet?” The tag line for this article could be, “What’s in your toolbox?” The question is an important one, because even if you don’t know, there’s an excellent chance that your employer does.
That’s why it’s crucial to take an inventory of what’s in your employee toolbox. What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? How can you turn your weaknesses into strengths? These are just a few of the questions that you should ask yourself. If you think it will help, write down your answers on a sheet of paper or type them into the computer. Then brainstorm ways in which to load up your toolbox with both tangible and intangible tools. Some of my suggestions are as follows:
- Additional training and/or continuous education
- Engaging in a mentoring relationship
- Requesting a “skills evaluation” from a colleague (or even your boss, if you feel comfortable enough). If your annual employee review is coming up, this is the perfect opportunity to conduct an audit of your toolbox.
What employers crave—what most people crave these days, really—is versatility and flexibility. They want employees who are versatile enough to provide them with solutions to their problems . . . even if resources and time are in short supply. By making a concerted effort to be that type of employee, you’ll find that the tools in your toolbox, in addition to your career, will grow dramatically.
So . . . what’s your toolbox?
If you have any questions about this topic, please send me an email at email@example.com. And if you’re currently engaged in a job search or are interested in advancing the scope of your career, be sure to send me your resume. I’d be happy to discuss your career goals and ambitions, including ways in which I can help you to achieve them. Any exchange of information, including resumes, will be kept in total confidence and handled in a discreet fashion.
Coming Up in the Next Issue
You’ve heard the business mantra: “There’s no such thing as standing still. You’re either moving forward or falling behind.” The same philosophy applies to the accumulation of knowledge, specifically the importance of continuous education. We’ll tackle this topic in the next issue of The Animal Science Monitor, from the perspective of both the employer and the employee.
Due to the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, the next issue of The ASM is scheduled for publication on Tuesday, November 18.