August 11, 2021
Written by Public Relations & Communications Strategist Jill Wilson
Augustana student Ellie Holmes ‘22, of Brandon, South Dakota, is majoring in biology with a minor in Spanish. Holmes is applying to medical school with the goal of specializing as a family practice physician or OB-GYN. As an intern, she split her time throughout the summer in the research lab at Augustana and Fernson Brewing Company in Sioux Falls — designing and testing an experiment that will provide Fernson with more information about the health of its yeast, allowing the company to produce more consistent, high-quality beers.
Q: What extracurricular activities are you involved in?
A: I am currently a percussionist in the Augustana Band and look forward to joining the Viking Marching Band drumline for their inaugural year this fall! I also serve as a senior senator on the Augustana Student Association, student ambassador, student coordinator for the Augustana Pre-Med Club and member of the leadership team for Campus Cupboard. In addition, I enjoy participating in intramurals, the Augustana Bike Club and Augie Outdoor Program.
Q: Where or how did you hear about Augustana?
A: Many family friends attended Augustana and they encouraged me to visit! I had also experienced Augustana from competing in piano competitions held in the Fryxell Humanities Center.
Q: What is/are the reason(s) you chose to come to Augustana?
A: I chose to come to Augustana because I love the community it provides. I really appreciate the support from the faculty at Augie; they truly care about you, your interests and your success. Another reason I chose to come to Augustana is because I am able to major in biology and participate in the Augustana Band. Our band directors and music faculty are some of the best and invested in creating a high-quality music program while also supporting their students in their professional endeavors.
Q: How did you get the internship? Did anyone help you? What did that journey look like?
A: I discovered this internship on the Augie Opportunities website, and thought it sounded like an interesting way to use my biology background! Before applying, I met with Blake and Derek, the co-CEOs of Fernson, to learn more about their goals for the summer.
Q: What do you like most about your internship?
A: My internship is exciting because it allows me to serve a local business while also applying the knowledge I have learned in my classes at Augie! It is exciting that my ideas are directly implemented into a local business, which will ultimately help them create a better product for the community.
Q: What do you hope to learn/gain from the internship?
A: I hope to learn more about brewing, the experimental design process and how to apply my academic knowledge to discover real-life solutions.
Q: Why is experiential learning important for future endeavors?
A: Experiential learning helps me make connections between concepts I have learned in the classroom to challenges faced in local businesses and organizations.