Kansas State University


Department of Communications and Agricultural Education

K-State Makes a Mark on AMS

Story by Jennifer Ray, second year master’s student

Four K-State Agricultural Communicator of Tomorrow (ACT) members and one nervous graduate student drove 600 miles to attend the 2014 Agricultural Media Summit (AMS). This was not my first AMS; in fact, it was my fifth. It was, however, the first time this California native attended as a K-State student. It was also my first time being responsible for conference travel details.

Front Row (left to right): Malerie Strahm, Maggie Seiler, Jennifer Ray
Back Row (left to right): Kate Hagans, Briana Jacobus, Logan Britton, and Nicole Lane

Kate Hagans, Nicole Lane, Malerie Strahm and Briana Jacobus rode with me to the summit in downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. Maggie Seiler flew in from her internship at Hoard’s Dairyman in Wisconsin to join us. Logan Britton was already in Indianapolis, where he interned for the National FFA Organization. Despite my fears of locking the keys in the school van, being late to the opening social and having a glitch with the hotel reservation, we pulled it all off and took away some prestigious honors.

Kris Boone, department head congratulates Logan Britton for receiving the Forrest Bassford Award.

Industry professionals and students from across the nation were introduced to Logan Britton, who was presented with the esteemed Forrest Bassford Student Award.

Britton, a senior majoring in both agricultural communications and journalism, and agricultural economics began courses in his agricultural economics master’s program this year. As if that were not enough to keep him busy, Britton is involved in a number of national and collegiate organizations, and he works as the office manager for the College of Agriculture academic programs and a teaching assistant in our department.

“I didn’t grow up living on a farm or showing livestock,” Britton says. “Realizing how important agriculture is, I want to bridge the gap that exists between the field and the plate today. I owe several people for opportunities provided to me and my growth—I’m truly honored to receive this award.”

Britton carries on a winning tradition for K-State. The Livestock Publications Council presents the scholarship award to one student each year, to recognize excellence, leadership and professionalism. Finalists receive a travel award to attend the Ag Media Summit. Since the Forrest Bassford award’s creation in 1985, K-State has had 10 student award winners and 16 finalists, the most of any university.

“We are very proud of Logan and all of our alumni who have received this honor. It is a testament to the success of our students and faculty,” says Kris Boone, department head.

The honors continued as two K-State students were elected to serve on the 2014—2015 National ACT officer team. Maggie Seiler was elected national vice president and Briana Jacobus was elected member relations coordinator. Seiler and Jacobus are both seniors in agricultural communications and journalism.

Seiler and Jacobus are both seniors in agricultural communications and journalism.

As a past national officer myself, I can say I am very excited for the opportunities ahead.

2014-2015 National Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow Officer Team. From left to right: Maggie Seiler, Taylor Kennedy, Briana Jacobus, Sidney Holland, Hannah Miller and their advisor, Emily Buck.

K-State students also took home a few awards from the National ACT Critique and Contest:

  • Casey Droddy—First place public relations single item and Excellence in Public Relations division award
  • Melissa Grimmel—Second place scenic photo
  • Kate Hagans—Second place radio package
  • Nicole Lane—Second place newsletter
  • Maggie Seiler—Third place short feature story

The event concluded with a night of dueling pianos, dancing and a battle of fight songs against the Oklahoma State Cowboys.

I am grateful the department asked me to help shuttle those rowdy undergraduates to Indy. I look forward to the annual summit for its professional development, networking, leadership opportunities and excitement. It was great to once again be there with a group of talented, professional and inspiring students. Go Wildcats!

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