Outstanding Postsecondary/Adult Program Awards


Most careers in modern agriculture and related sciences require education beyond secondary school. Outstanding agriscience and agribusiness educational programs beyond the high school level of instruction are more important today than ever before.

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Region III
Riverland Community College
Plainview, Minnesota
Instructor: Thomas Anderson

Anderson has been the farm management business instructor since 1998.  Anderson saw a need for management education in the community as many of his former students were now farmers.  As a result, he applied for the teaching position at Riverland Community College in order to ensure his former students receive a quality postsecondary education.  With such a passion to help farmers’ kick-start their farming careers, Anderson realized another need for partnerships within his program.  Fortunately, he was able to link his strongest supporters such as local banks and financial institutions; to ensure students have financial support in their farm operations.

“I see him working a lot of extra hours and providing his clients with the analysis information they need to make business decisions as his office is located in our bank building,” said Tom Deming, a community supporter of Anderson’s program and Senior Vice President of First National Bank.  “He has been an excellent resource to our customers but also to other lenders in the area, in providing data that is needed to help his clients.”

As an educator first and foremost, Anderson’s philosophy is simple, student first.  He believes the success of his program is found when he can effectively develop his students’ interests through curriculum that meets and exceeds their educational needs.  His students set visions and goals for their business and Anderson embraces his opportunity to teach them how to reach them.  He uses a variety of teaching techniques such as farm tours to reach each type of learner and varied topics to enhance the desire to learn and retain knowledge.

“Tom Anderson has taken a Farm Business Management program from ‘ground zero’ to the top in 13 years through his perseverance, dedication to hard work and a strong belief in the people he works with,” said John Hobert, colleague and fellow Farm Business Management instructor at Riverland Community College.  “He uses technology in his program to deliver education through the use of webinars, internet delivery system, and tele-conferencing.”

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Region II
North Central Missouri College
Chillicothe, Missouri
Instructor: David Nowland

Kent Murray

Rustin Jumps, David Nowland, and Bill Heinkebein are the instructors of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Department at North Central Missouri College.  The three gentlemen saw a need for an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree that would transfer to a four year university.  There are two different AAS degrees with which you can graduate from NCMC.   The first is an Agriculture and Natural Resources degree, which is intended for students that wish to pursue a four-year degree in agribusiness or the management of agriculture or natural resources.  The other emphasis is Equine Management and is designed for students that wish to seek a career in equine production or management. 

To earn their AAS degrees, students must complete general pre-requisites plus 17 credit hours of electives in agriculture and natural resources.  These specific transfer credits have been developed through Northwest Missouri State University and the University of Missouri-Columbia. 

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Region V
Houston County Young Farmers Association
Perry, Georgia
Instructor: Phillip C. Gentry

Jeremy Brooks

Phillip Gentry is the agriculture teacher and FFA advisor at Perry High School, as well as the advisor for the Houston County Young Farmer Association (HCYF).  Gentry has been teaching high school agriculture at Perry for 13 years, and saw a need for continuing agricultural education beyond graduation, as many of his former students were now farmers.  Members of the HCYF serve the 100,000 people of Houston County by offering their vast knowledge of agriculture and helping inform consumers about the sources of their food and fiber. 

The HCYF hosts a pre-K elementary class at the Perry High School agriculture program’s farm.  Kids come out for the day to learn and interact with swine, cattle, chickens and dairy heifers, and enjoy a hayride through the school’s farm.  HCYF feels this is a great way to make younger generations aware of how important farming is to their community and how the food chain works.  HCYF also attends the Houston County Career day where they set up an information booth about young people becoming involved in agriculture and how they can make a career out of it. 

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Region VI
Berlins Brothersvalley Young Farmers Chapter
Berlin, Pennsylvania
Instructor: Doyle Paul

Jeremy Brooks

Doyle Paul has been the advisor for the Berlin Brothersvalley Young Farmers Chapter (BBYF) for the past 43 years.  BBYF is a program that is approved through the Berlin Brothersvalley School District (BBSD) administration and school board annually.  The enrollment of the BBYF is 116 members who participate in weekly classes January through April.  Other monthly activities are held throughout the year.  BBYF hosts various speakers and tours for its members and their families, and members of BBFY are also members of the Pennsylvania Young Farmer Association (PYFA).

Paul has always valued individualized instruction in his classroom and on-site teaching.  He allows students to work at their own pace, gives recognition as often as possible, and always has a positive attitude.

 “Students are a product of their own environment,” says Paul.  He is given to using catchy phrases like,
“Autograph your work with excellence” and “You never have a second chance to make a first impression,” as a way to help motivate his young adults in stressful situations.

“The chapter serves as an important resource for agricultural education, for the members of the farming community through their continued education program.  Chapter members and their families receive the benefits of an active class schedule devoted to a variety of topics related to agriculture, local industry, and local history,” said Margie Zorn, Superintendent of, Berlin Brothersvalley School District.

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