Emily Frenzen


  • Hometown: Fullerton, NE
  • Campus: University of Nebraska–Lincoln
  • Major: Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communication
  • Serviceship Community: McCook, NE

Why did you pursue RFI’s Student Serviceship experience?
When applying and interviewing for RFI’s Student Serviceship experience, I knew it would be an experience different from any other internship I had applied for. The Student Serviceship is made up of out-of-the-box thinkers who don’t want to settle for mediocrity, and are passionate about doing something bigger than themselves. The idea of being immersed in a rural community where the opportunity for hands-on experience is endless got the fire in my belly going. While I love being in Lincoln and on campus, I pursued RFI’s Student Serviceship experience not only because rural Nebraska has my heart, but also because I believe rural communities are the future of Nebraska.

What do you hope to learn and how do you hope to be different from this experience?
There is always something to gain from working in a group setting with new people! I am excited to be challenged by people around me in a community different from where I call home. This will be an opportunity to learn more about my strengths and future career plans while making new connections. Additionally, the words “Economic Development” used to sound bland to me and I mostly envisioned dry business meetings around a table, lots of numbers, and slideshows of pictures and graphs. While my perspective has changed, I hope to better understand the action of creating greater overall well-being in a community.

What is your favorite aspect of Nebraska?
It’s hard to pick one aspect of Nebraska that I love most, but the people are what make it home. The tradition of the word “community” in Nebraska runs strong with families that come together in times of hardship, as well as in celebration. The people here know the value of hard work, giving their word, and going the extra mile as opposed to doing the bare minimum.