Published on 05/17/17

UGA students commit to public service this summer as Congressional Agricultural Fellows

By Merritt Melancon

Seven University of Georgia students studying in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences have embarked on the opportunity of a lifetime — serving as Congressional Agricultural Fellows in Washington, D.C.

The offices of Georgia Sens. David Perdue and Johnny Isakson and Reps. Sanford Bishop, Doug Collins, Buddy Carter, Rick Allen and Austin Scott are hosting the students during the 12-week fellowship in the nation’s capital. The 2017 Fellows stay in Delta Hall, UGA’s new residence hall in Washington. 

The students, who attend the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) at UGA, prepare briefs, attend committee hearings and conduct food- and agriculture-related research as part of the fellowship. In addition, they have the option of earning credit hours toward graduation.

“Agricultural Fellows are full-time employees of the congressional offices and serve as apprentice staff members,” said Josef Broder, CAES associate dean for academic affairs and fellowship program coordinator. “Many will be asked to serve as mentors to other student interns.”

The students representing UGA as 2017 Congressional Agricultural Fellows:

  • Andy Paul, a junior from Lexington, Georgia, studying agricultural education, is working in Rep. Allen’s office.
  • Taylor Teague, a junior from Lavonia, Georgia, studying agribusiness, is working in Rep. Collins’ office.
  • Hayley Nielsen, a junior from Kennesaw, Georgia, studying agriscience and environmental systems, is working in Sen. Perdue’s office.
  • Jim Henderson, a junior from Macon, Georgia, studying agribusiness, is working in Rep. Scott’s office.
  • Zane Tackett, a sophomore from Suwanee, Georgia, studying food science, is working in Rep. Carter’s office.
  • Makinizi Hoover, a junior from Waynesboro, Georgia, studying agricultural communication, is working in Rep. Bishop’s office.
  • Ashley Smith, a junior from Sylvania, Georgia, studying agribusiness and animal science, is working in Sen. Isakson’s office.

The Congressional Agricultural Fellowship is part of the CAES Deans’ Promise program. The Deans’ Promise program, a collection of enrichment opportunities ranging from internships to study abroad programs, encourages CAES students to take advantage of unique, out-of-the-classroom experiences during their time in college.

For more information on CAES, the Deans’ Promise or other opportunities available to students, visit

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