Mireya Perez, a senior studying horticulture, shared her experience in last year’s National Collegiate Landscape Competition. The event took place in Fort Collins, Colorado, and she participated in the employee development category.
More than 60 universities from all over the country participated in last year’s competition. There are different categories within the main event. BYU-Idaho placed 2nd in the overall competition, right behind BYU.
According to the NCLC website, the National Collegiate Landscape Competition is one of the largest career fairs in the industry. The event brings together the top landscape and horticulture students, top industry companies and dozens of the biggest industry manufacturers and suppliers.
“It is an amazing, amazing event in terms of networking,” Perez said. “You meet a lot of people who are big in the industry.”
Skyler Westergard and Reese Nelson, both faculty members of the Applied Plant Science Department, prepared Perez and about 20 other students for these competitions. They trained them by role-playing and helping them build up their resumes about four months in advance.
“Many students who attend and compete at NCLC rate the event as one of the highlights of their college careers,” NCLC mentioned on its webpage. “The tough competition and interaction with so many facets of the industry help frame possibilities for future careers.”
Perez advises the horticulture students who will participate in this year’s competition to have confidence in themselves and to talk to as many people as they can to take advantage of the networking opportunities.
“It’s a really cool opportunity, and you can make lots of connections and learn things from other people,” said Annie Robinson, a junior studying horticulture. “It gives you good exposure to new ideas and the industry too.”
For more information about the competition details, visit the BYU-Idaho Scroll’s Website.