STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Dexter Clanton
by Kayla Sellers, Senior/Ag Communications
When agronomy and soils turfgrass management senior Dexter Clanton transferred to Auburn in the fall of 2012, he had no idea he would end up on the mound of Boston’s Fenway Park.
No, unfortunately he did not get drafted as a pitcher, but he did land a summer internship working for the Red Sox Grounds Crew.
Dexter came to Auburn from Gadsden State Community College in hopes of pursuing a degree in horticulture from the College of Agriculture, but after a few classes and talking to his peers and professors, he quickly changed routes to the agronomy and soils program. From there, he joined the Turf Club and got a part-time job working with the Auburn Athletics grounds crew where he does day-to-day tasks managing the turfgrass on Auburn’s athletic fields.
It was through his involvement in those two organizations that Dexter was able to get an internship with the Red Sox.
“While working on the grounds crew at Auburn, my boss informed me of the internship opportunity,” said the Sand Rock native. “After he told me about this amazing chance, I took initiative to fill out the application online. I completed a three-step interview process, and then I was informed of my acceptance into their internship program.”
From there, he headed north to Boston where he spent his entire summer working to make Fenway’s legendary field meet the quality standards of the 2014 season.
“Daily operations consisted of preparing the pitcher’s mound and home plate, skin work, grass maintenance and bullpen work. Our overall goal was to have the field in the best condition for a game day and to have the most outstanding aesthetics in all of baseball.”
Dexter returned to Auburn in late August with a grand slam of turfgrass management experience in his stats. He plans to take that experience and apply it to his education in hopes of graduating this upcoming May. He is now an advocate for involving and interacting with younger students looking to gain opportunities similar to his.
“The College of Agriculture has a wide variety of great organizations to get involved in, and younger students should take advantage of this. Getting involved is what opened so many doors for me.”