Joe Roxburgh, a senior agribusiness major from Lincoln, Nebraska, discovered how interconnected business and agriculture are during his internship at Wells Fargo. While working in real estate management, he was both in the office and out in the field.
“It was truly unique to work in downtown Omaha in an office and then go once or twice a week to farms or commercial real estate properties. From the first day I started my internship, I was immediately integrated and accepted into their team. I looked forward to going to work each day, primarily because there was something new every day,” Roxburgh said.
Working in the real estate management office, he had the opportunity to review trust agreements, budgets for accounts, attend meetings with clients, complete inspections and report findings to clients. These tasks required business knowledge, decision-making and business communication skills and agriculture knowledge – all things agribusiness majors at the College of Business Administration acquire through their studies.
“The most entertaining and rewarding part of my job was attending client meetings. As someone who appreciates entrepreneurship, I enjoyed listening to our client’s life stories and their vision for the future. These meetings were incredibly important to the success of the properties Wells Fargo manages. It was crucial to hear what the clients think or what proposals they had,” he said.
His internship took him to rural communities in Nebraska, Iowa and Kansas. For example, he visited a farm to assess the weather damage that occurred when pivots were knocked over and crops were impaired. Together with the clients and his coworkers, Roxburgh came up with a situational assessment, a way to pay for new pivots in the budget and a crop plan to ensure the lands’ future yield.
“Agriculture inspections are incredibly alike and different from each other at the same time. They are alike in performing the inspection and reporting back to the beneficiaries. While at the same time each location is unique with its own challenges. I talked to many farmers. It was nothing but genuine conversation and business at its finest as we strived to reach our common goals,” he said.
The internship helped him understand the importance of agribusiness in Nebraska and how banks work with clients in this field.
“I never thought that real estate asset management for a big corporation would have such a personal feeling with agriculture clients,” Roxburgh said. “With this focus on community, I plan to keep my career options open as Wells Fargo has plenty of jobs in the field of agriculture and even more in real estate management.”