Name: Dr. Karyn Malinowski
Job Title: Professor of Animal Sciences and Founding Director of Equine Science Center
Organization: Rutgers–The State University of New Jersey
Education/Degree Earned: BS, MS, PhD
If you were in 4-H, when and what club(s) were you a part of? How did 4-H help you grow as a professional?
I was a member of the Somerset County Boots and Saddles 4-H Horse Project club here in New Jersey. I learned A LOT about horses at my club meetings and gained respect for the diversity in the equine community. I unfortunately did not take advantage of all of the public speaking and other competition opportunities besides the county and state horse shows.
What does a typical work day look like for you?
There is no typical day in my life; nor is there a set time schedule. The work environment ranges from the office, to the research facilities and classrooms on and off campus, and to a variety of venues around the globe where I participate in equine-related activities.
What is the most enjoyable part of your career? I love interacting with GOOD students and my staff at the Rutgers Equine Science Center. I have been so fortunate to have been able to turn my passion for and love of horses into my career! I also immensely enjoy doing research with horses. They are great research subjects. They don’t talk back or whine!
What are some of the challenges you face in your career?
Finding continued funding for our work and dealing with the politics in everyday life. Dealing with people can also be challenging at times.
What was your favorite science class in school and why?
Definitely biology! I loved the subject matter and my teacher! He made all the difference!
Can you share advice for youth aspiring to join your profession? (Colleges, majors, internships, tips, tricks, etc.)
Keep your options open! You don’t have to be a veterinarian to be successful in the horse/animal science industries. Also, have good adult mentors – people you respect and feel comfortable talking with.
Which of the following activities can help youth develop the specific skills needed to succeed in your field? (Select as many as apply)
- Public speaking
- Writing stories/ Journaling
- Serving in leadership roles
- Spending time outside in nature
- Staying physically healthy
- Taking and editing photos
- Taking notes in school/4-H club meetings
- Learning about current events
- Babysitting/Working with kids
- Taking care of a pet
- Community service
- Wildlife observation
Other suggested activities/skills: Participate in as many leadership roles as you can! Volunteer to work alongside mentors who you aspire to be like in your future career! Do well in school, study hard!
By Kendrin Dyitt, Atlantic County 4-H Program Associate; Amelia Valente, Monmouth County 4-H Program Assistant, Rutgers Cooperative Extension