With hundreds of agriculturally inclined youths gathering in one central location at the National FFA Convention last week, the Pork Checkoff used the opportunity to announce its latest offering: PorkSquare, a social networking tool designed to help the industry's youth find pork careers and training.
PorkSquare is driven by the same fundamentals as classic social media tools – real-time updates in the form of a virtual town square where internship or job seekers and companies can connect.
"For some time, the National Pork Board has bounced around the concept of a youth careers website - one focused specifically on the pork industry," Bryn Jensson, producer outreach marketing manager for Pork Checkoff, said in a press statement. "After hours of brainstorming, ideation and discussing the purpose and options, PorkSquare emerged as an ideal way to combine the best of all our ideas."
High school and college students can use PorkSquare to create personal profiles that are visible to employers with internships or scholarship sponsors. These profiles allow the young professional to share information about themselves beyond that of a traditional resume, providing hiring managers with a complete image of a candidate, the checkoff says.
Companies with a particular focus on the pork industry can also create profiles that students can search, allowing them a better sense of what a company offers. Profiles can include internships, scholarships, events and position and news updates.
"We see PorkSquare as more than a place to find an internship, but rather as a vehicle to build relationships between young professionals and industry leaders, and prospect for internships, scholarships, mentoring programs and pork-related events," said Mark Greenwood, senior vice president relationship management with AgStar Financial Services.
Jensson expects that the checkoff will add more features to the site as it grows. The site was developed with the help of AgStar Financial Services, Indiana Pork, Iowa Pork Producers Association, and the North Carolina Pork Council.
The web address is www.porksquare.com.
News source: Pork Checkoff