Three OSU ATI students smile in front of the campus sign.

Ohio State ATI: Small Campus, Big Opportunities

Written by OSU student Courtney Heiser

Are you a student who started at a regional campus of Ohio State and then transitioned to the Columbus campus? I did too! I got my start as a Buckeye at Ohio State ATI Wooster Campus. Never heard of it? Ohio State ATI, or the Agricultural Technical Institute, is a regional campus of OSU focused solely on students whose major specialization is within the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences. As a high school senior, I decided to further my education at ATI because of the great opportunities and advantages that set it apart:

The Small, Beautiful Campus

I was raised on my family’s row crop farm in a small, rural town in north-central Ohio. I went to a high school with only 70 students in my graduating class, so ATI was a great transition from high school to college. With about 700 students at ATI, the average class size is about 15-20 students, which allowed for one-on-one, hands-on learning with my professors. ATI has two academic buildings connected by a skywalk, so I never got lost. In the cold winter months, I never had to walk outside between classes allowing me to stay warm and focused. In the spring, the campus is bloom-iful! Our landscape horticulture students get lots of firsthand experience throughout the year as they utilize the greenhouse facilities to grow the plants and design the landscape around campus.

OSU ATI students at Welcome Days.

Sense of Community

Unlike the Columbus campus, ATI doesn’t have dorm buildings. Rather, it has Applewood Village, several streets of on-campus apartments. The apartments have full kitchens and plenty of cabinet space for food, as well as a living room to hang out with friends. Although the apartments involve cooking and cleaning, it allows students to take a step into adult life. In the center of the village is the Housing Office and Community Room that serves as a resource for students. The Community Room allows for many events and activities throughout the year. Many clubs and resident advisors put on programs throughout the week to get students involved.

OSU ATI students enjoying campus community events.

The Endless Opportunities

There are so many ways to get involved on and off ATI’s campus. In November, I, along with 10 other ATI students, had the opportunity to travel to Kansas City, MO, for the Agriculture Future of America Leaders Conference with nearly 2,000 other young leaders in agriculture from across the nation. There, we networked with peers and enhanced our professionalism.

Getting involved in clubs, intramurals and other organizations is one of the best ways to meet new people. ATI offers many clubs and organizations for students and even makes it easy for ambitious students to start their own clubs!

In ATI’s backyard is the Ohio Agriculture Research and Development Center (OARDC) where many students conduct research and gain hands-on work experience at the OARDC facilities.

OSU ATI students presenting a research project.

Hands-On Learning

Whether you want to be a golf course superintendent, work with heavy machinery, design outdoor living spaces or help feed the world, ATI provides hands-on experiences for your passion. Animal Science and Livestock Production and Management students work directly with animals such as dairy and beef cattle, horses, goats, sheep and pigs at ATI’s farm facilities. Other major specializations have specific labs and facilities where they can apply their knowledge through real-world applications as well.

OSU ATI students gaining hands-on experience in a computer lab.

An OSU ATI student watering plants in the greenhouse.

Being a Buckeye

We each take different journeys, but all have the same goal. Being an alumnus of The Ohio State University is an outstanding accomplishment. Wherever your journey takes you, I hope you enjoy as much as I have!

These are just a few reasons I loved starting my Buckeye journey at Ohio State ATI. To hear from a few of my peers, take a look at some other Buckeye Voices.

OSU ATI students smile with Brutus.

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