Alumni Spotlight: Aaron Brodkey ’18

Aaron Brodkey | Alumni Spotlight

Date: March 13, 2021

Program Associate at Big Idea Ventures, New York City

The range of food systems courses that Brodkey took as an undergraduate were key to attaining his current position in supporting plant and cell-based entrepreneurs. His responsibilities include deal sourcing for new companies, company & industry research, and connecting portfolio companies with resources to best grow their business.

Did any of your experiences on campus lead you to your current role?

The PitE & Food curriculum at Michigan was very influential in guiding my interests and goals for my career. The diversity of food systems courses allowed me to get a taste for what careers would be best for me. In these classes, I was able to explore the alternative protein industry (plant-based, cell-based, and fermentation-based foods) by tailoring projects to this area of interest. I also took part in programs like the Graham Sustainability Institute and UM Sustainable Food Program that were great leadership experiences.

What is one piece of advice you would give students interested in pursuing a career in food systems?

Focus your education on a hard skill that you enjoy doing and see how you can apply that skill to benefit the food system…Having a hard skill in your toolkit will make finding a job in the food system easier and increase your impact. Look into a minor or use your electives to learn a new skill!