My name is Miriam Hoffman and I hail from a diversified crop and livestock farm in north central Illinois, where my passion for agriculture began. As I became heavily involved in FFA during my time at Earlville High School, I began to see how I could build a meaningful career in the agriculture industry by serving both farmers and consumers. As of fall 2020, I am a junior at Southern Illinois University Carbondale studying agribusiness economics; I will be deferring both 2021 semesters to fulfill my year of service as a National FFA Officer, and look forward to learning and sharing more about the beautifully diverse industry of agriculture in that role. I am so grateful to have been selected as a 2020 GFAI Scholarship Recipient. This fall, I was placed with the Mound City CGB location in the southern tip of Illinois. I spent two days shadowing the facility manager, Jonathan Pounds, and learned about both barge and rail operations. We also travelled to the Birds Point, Missouri, location that Mound City oversees; the intersection of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers is an incredible sight and I was fascinated to learn of some of the history that made the location what it is. One of my favorite parts of the two days was walking out across the catwalk to see the barge operations over the river. The barge loading and unloading point is across the Illinois-Kentucky state line, so I visited two new states during my time at Mound City CGB! Mr. Pounds introduced me to a number of other employees at the location, from operations to accounting to grain merchandising. I experienced a broad range of potential opportunities in the grain industry and I am grateful for the experience provided by the GFAI. I look forward to returning with a blog post in the spring, where I will relate my National FFA experiences to the grain industry.
Grain & Feed Association of Illinois
3521 Hollis Dr.