Ian Kelly’s Summer Internship at Ball Horticulture – HLA Happenings

Ian Kelly’s Summer Internship at Ball Horticulture

Ian Kelly standing outside near a garden.

This summer Ian Kelly (Senior/Horticulture Production and Marketing) is a Young Plant Culture Research Intern at Ball Horticulture Company in West Chicago, IL.

The most rewarding part of this experience for Ian: Meeting so many important figures in the horticulture industry at events such as Cultivate! Despite having an area of focus, Ball Horticulture encourages interns to branch out to other departments in the company. Ian has worked in greenhouses, the main office, and recently in the Research and Development department. “Even just a couple weeks into the experience, I’ve learned a lot and started my own research project looking at chilling injury of young plants in multiple species and already the preliminary results from my project have sparked interest from other people within the company to try their cold-resistant varieties.”

Ian’s biggest challenge was balancing his internship, summer classes, and life. “But it has definitely been a lot trying to output my best at the internship, get good grades in the summer classes, enjoy time with my new friends, and keep in touch with Purdue friends and family. That all being said, it’s definitely achievable while keeping your sanity and I think it’ll become rewarding once its all said and done and I can look back and see what I accomplished this summer.”

Ian’s piece of advice to those considering an internship: “An internship is a great way to find out what you do and don’t like doing; what we learn at college can broadly apply to different areas within the same major/field so getting a taste for the day-to-day life is invaluable. This is my second internship with my first being for the West Lafayette Parks and Recreation Department – I learned a lot of professional skills and personal development while working there but it also had my shift my career focus into something more like what Ball Horticultural does.”

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