"Class of 2020" Senior Played Key Role in Introducing New Students to Iowa State

by Barb McBreen

Kara Klemm is finishing her senior year working at the Iowa State University Dairy Farm before she takes a full-time job in the food safety division at Seaboard Foods, Inc. in Oklahoma.

Klemm, who is majoring in animal science, said working at the dairy farm fulfilled a dream for her.

“In high school I was interested in dairy and working on farms,” Klemm said. “When came here, I found this job on the student job board and I just fell in love with it.”

Along with her dairy farm experience, Klemm has worked as a mentor for incoming and prospective students.

Kelsey Powell, an animal science advisor, said Klemm was a mentor and played an important role in recruiting students.

“She served as an AnCy guide and as an Iowa State Student Admissions Representative, or STAR,” Powell said. “Even in these uncertain times, Kara is willing to be available to help answer questions for prospective students.”

Klemm, who grew up in Leland, Ill., transferred from Joliet Junior College to Iowa State as a sophomore. She said an Iowa State student’s presentation convinced her to come to Ames. Introducing other students to Iowa State has been rewarding.

“There’s been quite a few students that I helped with their visit or orientation, and six months later I see them in the hallway and we remember each other,” she said. “It’s kind of cool because I know I’ve had an impact on someone.”

Klemm said she was a little nervous jumping into clubs and activities as a transfer student, but once she did, it was rewarding.

“It was tough my first year. I was nervous, but you have to tell yourself everyone feels the same way,” Klemm said. “It’s a way to open doors where you least expect it.”

Studying abroad was also an opportunity Klemm cherishes. She studied and visited dairy farms in the Netherlands in 2019 during her spring semester.

“It’s a unique opportunity at Iowa State,” Klemm said. “I went to the Netherlands for two weeks on an animal science travel study course and I was able to bring those experiences back to Iowa and relate it to Iowa’s animal industry.”

Klemm is disappointed  graduation was canceled this spring, but hopes to visit her mom in Florida before starting her full-time job in Oklahoma.

“It was a letdown,” Klemm said. “I have a twin sister who graduated from her technical school two years ago and I missed that graduation ceremony, and now she’ll miss mine.”

April 27, 2020