An invitation to campus
By NCTA Dean Larry Gossen
Last Friday, two of our Aggie students joined me in giving a presentation about the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture before administrators and leaders of the University of Nebraska.
You see, it was the meeting of the NU Board of Regents, the individuals who are elected to lead the University of Nebraska system which includes NCTA in Curtis. They met Maddy and Tanner.
Maddy Carr of North Platte, NCTA 2022 Aggie of the Year, works on the ranch crew, is on the shotgun sports team, is an Agriculture Production Systems major with an Animal Science option. She will receive an Associate of Applied Science degree.
Tanner Ostrander, from Ogallala, is the 2022-23 Student Senate president. He also is an APS major with an Associate of Science Animal Science option. He will transfer next fall to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Maddy and Tanner truly do represent our campus and our student body well.
For the three of us, meeting at the University of Nebraska at Kearney was convenient. We delivered an important message: NCTA is a campus where student success is key.
It comes as no surprise to you, our local citizens, that the real magic behind the success of our students is our dedicated and passionate faculty and staff.
We currently have 13 full time faculty and 4 temporary lecturers along with 31 full time staff members, all focused on student success – across recruitment, retention, graduation, and career placement.
- 236 full time on-campus students, 53 dual credit and 14 part time students
- Average 12 dual credit students per year enrolling as first-time NCTA freshmen
- First time in my tenure that we have surpassed 300 total students
- Consistently 2/3 female; largest number studying Vet Tech
- Nearly 72% of NCTA students come from Nebraska communities
- Enrollment includes 77 students from 19 other states
- 11 states enroll 1 student, 8 states have several, 10 from Colorado, 24 from Kansas
- Nebraskans from 107 different towns and 66 counties. Grand Island, Lincoln and North Platte have most students, majority come from 17 counties, within 150 miles of Curtis
- Of 236 full time students, 164 currently live on campus (3 residence halls)
- Currently at 91% room occupancy rate
- 20% transfer to 4-year colleges; Job placement nearly 100% in either their field of study or a closely related field
- Many NCTA graduates return to their family farm or ranch
I also reported on aging facilities and the priority need to bring our Aggie cafeteria in the basement of a dormitory above ground, where it is modernized and ADA-accessible.
We’ve shared some proposals for this vision of a renovated Student Success Center with our local community, and now the Regents are aware of this need as well. We will continue to share with the community additional updates regarding our new cafeteria project.
As I concluded my portion of the presentation, I issued an invitation.
We truly are proud of our campus and love to show it off. I am honored to invite the Board to experience the magic of NCTA. Let our students provide a tour and host a Board of Regents meeting at NCTA whenever and as soon as they can manage to fit this into the schedule.
While future meeting locations and dates are set for the next year or two, I do hope that the Board can take us up on the invitation. Curtis is a great community, and NCTA is a wonderful campus. We are small and rural yet growing with student success.
A recap of the meeting presentation can be found at the 25-minute mark on YouTube at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68q1CbkJ9G8&t=1526s
We hosted visitors to campus on Sunday, providing a welcome to a group which visits us each fall. The Nebraska LEAD program brings a new two-year program to NCTA each October.
Now in its 40th year, the mission statement of LEAD continues “to prepare and motivate men and women in agriculture for more effective leadership.”
I always enjoy meeting the LEAD fellows, as they are called, and invite them and their director, Dr. Terry Hejny, to campus any time.
Good luck to our Aggie student teams traveling this week. Give it your all – that is success.
Oct. 3-6: NCTA at seven College Fairs, Lincoln high schools
Oct. 5: NCTA at Southwest Nebraska Career and College Fair, Cambridge High School
Oct. 8: Curtis Mobile Food Pantry, 9-11 a.m., Community Center
Oct. 8: Livestock Judging, Bermis Judging Contest, Bertrand
Oct. 8-9: Shotgun Sports, Hastings College meet, Grand Island Heartland Park
Oct. 8-9: Ranch Horse Team, COWN Winterfest, Loveland, Colorado
Part of the University of Nebraska system, the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture is a two-year institution with a statewide mission of preparing students for successful careers in agriculture, veterinary technology and related industries. NCTA is known for its affordable tuition, high job-placement rate for its graduates, and for the success of student teams in competitive activities including crops judging, ranch horse events, livestock judging, shotgun sports, stock dog trials, and intercollegiate rodeo. The college is consistently ranked as one of the best two-year schools in the nation.Download a PDF of this press release