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Department of Communications and Agricultural Education

Category: T-July 2017

Beloit High has Big Future with new Ag Teacher

J.RutledgeStory by Mikhayla DeMott, (ACJ)

Jake Rutledge calls Dover, Kansas, home but his passion for agricultural education has taken him elsewhere, Beloit, Kansas, where he currently resides. This recent graduate is the new Agricultural Educator and FFA Advisor at Beloit High School.

Rutledge’s job comes with joys and a few challenges. His greatest task is learning all there is to know about the program and its history, so he can figure out how to move the program into the future. Though the school year hasn’t started yet, he has already been able to work with students, his favorite part thus far.

“I’ve already got to work with students this summer and plan the upcoming year,” Rutledge says. “It is great to see how excited they are for the upcoming year.”

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ACJ Graduate Moving up in the Dairy Industry

Audrey SchmitzStory by Mikhayla DeMott, (ACJ)

Audrey Schmitz, May 2017 graduate, hails from Axtell, Kansas where she grew up on a dairy farm. This northeast Kansas native has recently moved across the country to Twin Falls, Idaho. She feels right at home at her new job working as an editor for The Progressive Dairymen magazine.

This dairywoman comes from a 90-cow registered Holstein farm and has been surrounded and mentored by many people in the dairy industry since a young age. She has been heavily involved in the industry through 4-H and FFA as a showman and judger. Schmitz now finds herself as a dairy industry professional working with many of the people who have taught and advised her over the years through all her activities.

“My favorite part about my job is working with my mentors and professors and reaching out to them for stories for The Progressive Dairymen,” Schmitz says.

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Agricultural Education Student and Faculty Host the Kansas Youth Water Advocates Conference

Story by Mikhayla DeMott, (ACJ)

The goal of engaging youth in water education efforts was shared by Grace Roth, an incoming high school sophomore from Holcomb, at the Kansas Association of Agricultural Educators mid-winter conference in January. Dr. Gaea Hock, assistant professor of agricultural education, heard her speak and worked with Roth to make her idea a reality. Katelyn Bohnenblust, rising sophomore in agricultural education, Hock and the Kansas Department of Agriculture, hosted the first Kansas Youth Water Advocates Conference July 12-14 with support from several sponsors.

Eleven high school students attended the three-day conference in Manhattan. Students learned about Kansas water resources and how to advocate on behalf of water-related topics. Several expert speakers presented on topics such as the Ogallala Aquifer, watershed management and the Kansas Water Vision.

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Department Additions

Story by Mikhayla DeMott, (ACJ)

The department is getting some exciting additions this summer. Two hiring searches are currently underway and will be completed before the new school year. A new Agricultural Communications and Journalism instructor is being hired, as well as a new research assistant for the Center for Rural Enterprise Engagement.

Interviews are currently underway for the new ACJ instructor position. There are two finalists for the position; both are K-State graduates.

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