Madi Layman fueled by love for agriculture

Madi Layman spent her youth drawn to agriculture. So when it came time for her to pick a career, the 2021 Ohio State graduate landed on agricultural communication — a field that drew from her background and allowed her to harness her strengths to make a difference.

When Layman began applying for colleges, she knew that launching her university experience close to home would allow her the flexibility to continue to work on her family farm while earning credit hours.

Not only that, the smaller setting allowed her to make connections with peers and professors that helped build foundational skills that followed her to the Columbus campus. “I think it just really helped with the transition and learning to do college schoolwork,” she said.

She found she appreciated the availability of professors to address individual questions, as well as the opportunities to bond with like-minded students — a Habitat for Humanity trip to Arkansas to build homes will always be a highlight for her. “That was a really good connection, to see who else on campus was interested in the same thing,” she said.

A combination of her classwork and real-world experience gleaned through internships fast-tracked her for her first job, and she credits Ohio State with facilitating her entry into the world of business and agriculture.

“Ohio State gave me a lot of opportunity to explore what I really wanted to do prior to taking my internships,” she explained. “So getting to experience those different things really helped me and eventually put me where I am today.”

In her current role as manager of demand and market development for the Ohio Soybean Council, Layman has been able to flex her muscles in international business, most recently traveling to South Korea and Thailand to help expand the Ohio Soybean Council’s footprint in the global market.

She’s optimistic about her future and looking forward to learning and traveling more as she builds a career around her passion.

“Growing up in agriculture, I always enjoyed it. I like the people that I work with. And agriculture gives you food, fiber and fuel; it kind of gives you the building blocks of life every day,” she said. “So I think being able to let people know about what agriculture is about — I enjoy being a part of that.”