Tess Kern – Corteva Agriscience, Integrated Field Science Intern

This summer, junior in Agronomy, Tess Kern interned with Corteva Agriscience. She served the Corteva team as an Integrated Field Science Intern. Her internship was located in Johnston, Iowa, which is right outside of Des Moines. In her position, she spent time collecting data and maintaining plots and crops with efficacious insect traits. She also had a research project that she was working on throughout the summer. She was responsible for collecting and updating all of the data necessary for her project.

The most memorable aspect of her internship was the days spent digging and washing thousands of corn roots. They were doing this to score them based on corn rootworm feeding. During the process, she and the team would get soaking wet, covered head to toe in dirt from power washing roots. “My hat is forever stained with dirt speckles,” Tess jokes.

Tess was able to take concepts she learned from her classes at Iowa State University and apply them in her internship. “I realized I remembered more than I thought from AGRON 280 and 181,” Tess shares. She worked closely with traits for disease and insect resistance and did a lot of phenotyping. She shared that it was cool to see the other side of the industry before crops are a commercial product.

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