New leadership joining NCTA
July 30, 2019
NCTA Dean’s Column by Ron Rosati, Ph.D.
CURTIS, Neb. - It’s with mixed emotions that I've announced that I will be retiring as NCTA dean.
Dr. Kelly Bruns, director of the University of Nebraska West Central Research and Extension Center in North Platte, will assume college administration responsibilities as interim dean beginning August 5th.
A national search for a permanent dean will be conducted under the direction of University of Nebraska Vice President Mike Boehm.
It has been an honor for me to serve in this capacity for the past six years.
During that time, I’ve developed a strong appreciation for the people I’ve worked with and for the residents of Curtis. I’ve found the community to be friendly, supportive, honest, and hard-working. I’m still struck by the many nice Curtis attributes that I see on a daily basis - leaving your front door unlocked, leaving the keys in the ignition when you go shopping, being able to tell a store owner “please just add it to my bill”, or having the counter person at the Department of Motor Vehicles being extraordinarily helpful when completing paperwork.
I will miss those people in the Curtis community.
Due to the hard work of the faculty and staff at NCTA, the college has accomplished much during the recent past:
- External evaluators have ranked NCTA as among the top two-year trade schools in the United States based on graduate success, affordability, completion success, and student experience.
- Federal income tax records show that NCTA graduates are among the nation's top earners for two-year college graduates.
- During the past six years, full-time on-campus student enrollment increased 5.7% annually with a total cumulative increase of 28.5% in five years. Fall 2018 fulltime NCTA enrollment was the highest in 23 years.
- NCTA financial health strengthened every year during the past five, improving from an annual deficit in FY14 to an annual surplus in FY18.
- The college received federal government authorization to enroll international students and has subsequently enrolled two groups from Rwanda. I appreciate how well the students have been welcomed by the campus and Curtis community.
- The college was reaccredited with strong positive feedback and without condition.
- NCTA implemented a very successful public relations campaign to help Nebraska residents understand successes of the institution.
It’s been my privilege to serve with the faculty and staff who are responsible for these extraordinary accomplishments.
Although I am retiring from NCTA, I will be continuing with another assignment for the University of Nebraska.
Effective mid-August through the end of 2019, I will serve as senior advisor for the Rwanda Institute for Conservation Agriculture (RICA). This new college is approximately the same size as NCTA and offers a three-year bachelor’s degree in agriculture. The college is enrolling its first class of 80 students in September. My responsibilities at RICA will be to assist the college administration with the startup of this new institution.
NCTA is a very special college with a focused and valuable mission.
The college offers a model of education that is enjoying a resurgence in popularity among higher education leaders throughout the United States. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to serve this special institution, it students, employees and community as dean for the past six years.
NCTA Mission: The Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture is devoted to a statewide mission of preparing students for successful careers in agriculture, veterinary technology, food and related industries. The college provides open access to innovative technical education resulting in associate degrees, certificates, diplomas and other credentials.
July 30-Aug. 3 - Eustis Corn & Stock Show
July 30-Aug. 4 - Frontier County Fair, Stockville
Aug. 2 – NCTA Summer Session ends
Aug. 7 – Agronomy Youth Field Day, 8:30 a.m. NCTA campusDownload a PDF of this press release