Heather Hammack Discusses Famous Software Partnership With Cal Poly and Ocean Mist® Farms
FRESNO, CA - The future of fresh produce depends on the next generation of ag-passionate to wield not only traditional industry knowledge but also a grasp of the technological landscape and how it is changing careers and company longevity for the better. Taking up this task is Famous Software and its partnership with California Polytechnic State University, better known by its nickname, Cal Poly.
“Our partnership with the esteemed university’s Agribusiness Department is multifaceted. This collaboration has begun shaping the next generation of agribusiness leaders by equipping them with an understanding of technology’s profound impact on the produce industry,” Heather Hammack, President of Famous Software, shares with me.
Far from just theory or concept, this partnership provides real-world connections and experiences akin to Cal Poly’s ‘Learn by Doing’ philosophy. Within the benefits of this program, students gain firsthand exposure to Famous Software solutions through guest lecturing in Logistics and Supply Chain classes, and field trips to customer facilities.
In addition, Famous Software has also recently partnered with Ocean Mist® Farms along with Cal Poly for this initiative.
“As part of this collaboration, we’ve had the privilege of guest lecturing in Cal Poly Ag Business classes, offering students a comprehensive understanding of the supply chain process from field to warehouse, with a focus on technology’s critical role in the industry. Ocean Mist Farms provided the platform for such an exploration,” Heather expresses.
Through the collaboration, a group of Cal Poly students toured Ocean Mist Farms’ impressive fields and processing facility, providing the students with an unforgettable hands-on experience.
“We’re proud to be working alongside such esteemed institutions, and we look forward to continued collaboration in the future,” Heather reflects.
So, where is the vision leading next? Further empowering those future leaders, of course.
“This year we will be hosting students at the Global Produce & Floral Show where they will be able to witness behind-the-scenes business that happens at industry trade shows,” Heather reveals. “Such a pathway to success deserves hands-on experiences and our continued support. We sponsor the AMB Club and Agribusiness Department, and we also provide scholarships to a student who shows outstanding character, leadership, and academic excellence.”
On top of these advantageous resources, Famous sponsors and attends the ABM Club’s Annual Ag Showcase. Through this, the company connects with students who are seeking internship and full-time job opportunities.
As the program continues to evolve, these leaders share their impressions of its commitment and impact…
Glen Alameda, Director of Supply Chain and Compliance, Ocean Mist® Farms
“Famous Software led the way in a collaborative effort with Ocean Mist Farms, bringing real-world fresh produce supply chain management into the classroom at Cal Poly. This class equipped students with hands-on experience and invaluable industry insights, as we worked together to bridge the gap between academia and the ever-evolving world of agriculture.”
Russ Kabaker, Assistant Dean, Advancement and External Relations, College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, California
“Introducing Famous Software into the classroom is crucial. It highlights the importance of industry partnerships and engagement in educating both faculty and students about the latest industry developments. The unique experience of bridging academia and industry is essential in presenting the amazing career paths available to this next generation of agricultural industry members.”
Dr. Ricky Volpe, Ph.D.
“Famous Software’s involvement with my Supply Chain Management class was the embodiment of the Learn by Doing philosophy at Cal Poly. Our goal as faculty is to prepare our students for the industry, so they enter the workforce ready to succeed and produce on day one. Heather Hammack, Kirk Parrish, and Carolyn Craft visited the class to discuss the Famous company and the company’s role in the food system, shared materials and documents to illustrate their business and products, fielded questions from the students, and led us on an incredible field trip to Ocean Mist where we got to see everything in action. There is no question that the experience has changed how I teach my upper-level courses, and I hope more agribusiness companies show interest in becoming as involved in our curriculum and students as Famous.”
While there is no tried and true blueprint for success, there are great companies and organizations that lead by example. This partnership is paving the way for such opportunities and the future of fresh produce.