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NCTA Aggie advocates for youth, education

NCTA Aggie advocates for youth, education

Josi Arnold, recipient of the IANR Inclusive Excellence Award, often lends a helping hand to students and staff at NCTA. Campus deans Jennifer McConville and Larry Gossen joined Arnold at steps of Ag Hall for the outdoor commencement in May. (NCTA Photo)
Josi Arnold, recipient of the IANR Inclusive Excellence Award, often lends a helping hand to students and staff at NCTA. Campus deans Jennifer McConville and Larry Gossen joined Arnold at steps of Ag Hall for the outdoor commencement in May. (NCTA Photo)

Josi Arnold is a listener, friend, mentor, problem-solver, and includer.

Her advocacy on behalf of college students was noteworthy throughout 2020, particularly due to the global pandemic.

Arnold’s appreciative supervisors at the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture took note.

They’d worked closely with Arnold, who has been the NCTA Dean’s Office administrative associate since early 2020.

She helped students and the campus community during the transition to remote learning in March, and then back to campus for in-person sessions that summer and fall semester.

Last winter she, was nominated for recognition by the University of Nebraska’s Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

“Josi is not only a valued employee at NCTA, but she was also a student,” NCTA Associate Dean Jennifer McConville, wrote in the nomination.

 “This gives her a unique view to be a resource for diversity and inclusion to students and employees, both.”

Arnold received the sole IANR Inclusive Excellence Award this spring in a virtual, online program for

IANR faculty, staff, researchers and extension personnel recognized for outstanding service.  The award included a monetary stipend.

NCTA Dean Larry Gossen also recommended Arnold for the award, praising her work in juggling job responsibilities and interactions campus wide on behalf of all.

Examples cited for inclusion and diversity through Arnold’s work:

-        Assisting new students with technology for registration and online academics.

-        Ensuring an “equal playing field” for a diverse student community of learners.

-        Advocating for student representation on the NCTA Dean’s Council and campus committees.

-        Helping individuals with disabilities or technical challenges to maneuver electronic processes and online, digital applications.

-        Aiding the campus community and Dean’s Office with COVID-19 health information and twice-weekly testing for the spring semester (which enabled students, teams and individuals to travel and participate in events off campus).

A Colorado native, Arnold earned her associate degree from NCTA in veterinary technology in 2014. She has previously worked in the VT division, as a para-educator with the Medicine Valley Public Schools, and currently is pursuing a bachelor’s degree online in early childhood education through the University of Nebraska-Kearney.

Arnold is active in community and regional service including being a mentor and board member with Medicine Valley Teammates Mentoring Program, a Wish Granter volunteer with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and member of the Curtis Fall Festival Committee.

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.

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