Kelsey grew up on a farrow to finish hog operation east of Springfield, near Assumption, IL. She spent many summers caring for the swine herd, and credits the operation and her family for the extended knowledge and strong work ethic instilled in her today. “It is a rewarding experience to be able to watch your hard work grow and contribute to society,” Burgener says.
She graduated from Central A&M High School in 2013, then continued to Lake Land College where she earned an Associate’s Degree in Agriculture. From there, she transferred to Illinois State University and additionally earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture Communications and Leadership in 2017. While there, she was part of the Processed Meats Judging Team that placed 2nd in team reasons at the University of Missouri.
While attending ISU, Burgener completed two internships. She was a student teacher intern for the Windsor FFA Chapter5. Also, she spent a summer as the Agriculture Communications Intern at The Equity, assisting the Agronomy department coordinate various events.