Tag Archives: NCTA Curtis

The Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture and the Curtis community have a group of special visitors on campus this month.

We welcomed 50 young men and women from the country of Rwanda to our campus for three weeks of intensive course work on agricultural skills development. The students have just completed their freshmen year of study at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR) in what is known as CUSP, the CASNR Undergraduate Scholars Program.

The Rwandan students arrived in Curtis last weekend for an orientation before beginning their three-week initiative. On Sunday, many of the students participated in various religious services in the community. That evening they were welcomed to potluck dinner at the Curtis United Methodist Church. A hearty thank you to the Methodist church for a warm welcome and a great activity!

Pastor Tunde Oladimeji gave the students an excellent presentation on how to be successful in college, in life and in a small Nebraska community such as Curtis. The students greatly appreciated the wisdom and insights shared by Tunde.

Welcome to 50 students in the CASNR Undergraduate Scholars Program for a 3-week study of agricultural skills development at the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis. (Photo by Tina Smith/NCTA)

After a great meal and wonderful conversation, the evening ended on a high note as the students engaged in cultural dancing. Many of the local parishioners joined in the dancing and great fun. It was a warm and friendly evening enjoyed by all.

NCTA Courses

     When classes started on campus Monday morning, we had students learning about horticultural production techniques in the college greenhouses, basics of welding in the NCTA welding lab, and skeletal structures of large and small animals in the anatomy lab at the veterinary technology building.

The scholars are engaged in a three-hour course each morning and a second three-hour course every afternoon. During their second and third weeks at NCTA they will have two new courses each week.

Topics in Week 1 include:

  • Welding – arc welding and oxyacetylene
  • Horticulture – outdoor gardening, woody plant pruning, tropical plant propagation, mulching and new plant care
  • Veterinary Technology – skeletal anatomy, parasitology lab, dissection lab, necropsy lab and parasitology lab 2

Topics in Week 2 include:

  • Welding – arc welding and oxyacetylene
  • Livestock artificial insemination
  • Agronomy
  • Animal Science –  including meat science, nutrition and rations, range plant identification and rangeland monitoring, and equine science

Topics in Week 3 include:

  • Farm power systems – tractor and small gas engine maintenance and repair
  • Equipment operation – safe operation of tractors and farm equipment
  • Veterinary Technology – Injection techniques, clinical pathology 1 & 2, beef quality assurance, and livestock handling

Community Networking

These 50 young men and women are interested in meeting our Curtis community and learning about your life in rural Nebraska. Many events are scheduled in the evenings and weekends for them to learn more about Nebraska and its culture. This Sunday, May 20, a community potluck is planned for 5:30 p.m. in the Curtis Community Center. Please join us for dinner and a great community opportunity for you to meet our visitors.

If you would be interested in hosting a group of Rwandans for a tour, field trip, meal or recreation, let us know. Contact our NCTA Residence Life Director Erika Arambula at 308.367.5247.

Thank you, Curtis community, for making this a great experience for all of us!

May events:

12-June 1 – Rwandan Students Study at NCTA

21 –Frontier County 4-H Council, 7 p.m., Ag Hall

23 – Standard of Excellence NCTA Livestock Judging Camp

24 – West Central Youth Animal Science Field Day

NORFOLK, Neb. – The Aggies at the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis have repeated a Reserve Champion title in national agriculture contests hosted in Nebraska.


Twenty five students competed in 12 categories at the North American Colleges and Teachers in Agriculture competitions April 19-21.  Awards were presentedSaturday evening.


Nearly 760 students from 43 college and universities competed in events coordinated by Northeast Community College in Norfolk. NCTA was one of the 16 two-year and 27 four-year colleges in the competition.


The NCTA Aggies earned second place in sweepstakes points by capturing 10 team placings in the top three. Black Hawk College of Moline, Illinois won the overall sweepstakes title for two-year colleges.


“We are tremendously proud of our industrious students for receiving these national academic honors,” said Ron Rosati, dean of NCTA, which is the only two-year college of the University of Nebraska system.


“These contests document that NCTA students have a high degree of competence in a variety of agricultural skills. I appreciate their hard work and dedication to academic excellence,” Rosati said. “I also appreciate the guidance and mentorship they received from their faculty to lead them to this high level of expertise.”


A contest highlight was a repeat by the NCTA Crops Judging program again winning the national championship.  The four Aggie team members swept individual placings.


Dalon Koubek of North Platte won individuals honors, with Lee Jespersen of Hemingford in second, Will Kusant of Comstock as third, and Nate Montanez of Grand Island at fourth. Crops judging had 160 contestants.


Aggie teams won second places overall for Agriculture Knowledge Bowl, Agribusiness, Agricultural Mechanics, Dairy and Precision Agriculture.


NCTA teams were third overall in Computer Applications, Equine Judging and Horticulture.


Aggie students represented NCTA academic areas of agribusiness management, agronomy, agricultural mechanics and horticulture, and animal science and agriculture education.


A complete listing of all NCTA students competing and their hometowns, team and individual category placings will be available this week at:https://ncta.unl.edu/news-events.

CURTIS, Neb. – Twenty five Aggie students from the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis will be putting their academic skills to the test this week at a national collegiate event.

Students from the two-year University of Nebraska institution are entered in 11 different academic and skills contests, and the overall general “Agriculture Knowledge Bowl” of the North American Colleges and Teachers in Agriculture.

The NACTA contest draws nearly 600 students from 50 two- and four-year colleges across the U.S. and Canada each year. For 2018, it is hosted at Northeast Community College in Norfolk, Nebraska.

The NCTA Aggies are returning champions among 2-year colleges in crops judging, precision agriculture, and the knowledge bowl.

CUTLINE: Nate Montanez, Grand Island

From 2017, the NCTA Aggies won the Reserve Champion Sweepstakes title among 2-year schools during the event   at Kansas State University in Manhattan. The prize is based on total accumulated points.

“The NACTA Judging Conference provides our students an excellent career-based learning experience,” said Brad Ramsdale, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the Agronomy and Agricultural Mechanics division. “It is great to be part of an event supported by numerous agricultural colleges and universities.”

Ramsdale is coordinating NCTA’s faculty delegation with Doug Smith, Ph.D., Animal Science and Agriculture Education division chair, and Mary Rittenhouse, chair of Agribusiness Management Systems.

A 5-member, multi-disciplinary “quiz bowl” team represents their three divisions. Winners from Thursday’s rounds advance to the Friday night finals.

Ramsdale coordinated NCTA’s four teams in agricultural welding, precision agriculture, horticulture and crops.

Smith’s Aggie four teams are judging livestock, equine, and dairy, and in the livestock management contest.

Rittenhouse and Jeremy Sievers are NCTA’s business faculty for students comprising three teams in agribusiness, computer applications, and agricultural sales and communications.

A reception welcomes NACTA attendees to NECC and Norfolk on Wednesday evening, followed by competitions on ThursdayFriday and Saturday.  An evening awards banquet concludes activities on Saturday.

The Aggies are on the final run to the home stretch of their academic year!

From working horses to stock dogs, rodeo to agronomy, cattle breeding to entrepreneurship seminars, and so much more, our students are extremely busy caring for livestock and finishing projects.

Classes, team sports, field trips and educational outreach are all being packed into these final two weeks at the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis before final exams begin on April 26th. Then, graduation is May 3rd.

NCTA students involved in equine-related activities will be spread across three locations this weekend.

In one of NCTA’s busiest multi-day runs yet, the Aggie staff, faculty and, most certainly our students, will be competing and educating the public at events in McCook, Omaha and Spearfish, South Dakota.

Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture equine-related academic enrichment events this week:

April 12-15 in Omaha

NCTA students from the Veterinary Technology Systems division will be in Omaha, coordinating public education and showcasing NCTA’s equine-related programs in animal health. The 2018 International Horse Exposition brings thousands of equine owners and competitors, vendors and spectators to the huge show and educational expo at the Century Link Center.

You can find our NCTA students at a large booth in the north corner of the Education Center at “EquiMania” with educational displays. Over the four days, three faculty instructors and 12 students are representing equine health, veterinary technology, animal health and all areas of NCTA’s academic programs which includes hundreds of school children on educational tours.

The Aggies are presenting materials created by three NCTA faculty: Ricky Sue Barnes, DVM, Darcy Moreland, DVM, and Professor Judy Bowmaster-Cole.  A color-coded horse skull will be used as a wonderful exhibit for teaching school children about science.

Other exhibits will include the gastrointestinal tract from a horse, and x-rays of bones found in horse legs and feet. Many of these educational materials were developed with a $10,000 grant made to NCTA for the International Horse Expo displays.

Expo hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily and admission is free to the public. Additionally, horses from around the globe are competing in dressage and jumping events each day. Seehttps://www.internationalomaha.com/ for the schedule and ticket information.

April 13-15 in McCook

NCTA Ranch Horse Team kicks off a three-day horse show in McCook by hosting amateurs, professionals and collegians at the 2018 Punchy in Pink Spring Round-up.

Professor Joanna Hergenreder and her ranch horse students are tackling a major feat by once again organizing and running a significant working ranch horse competition and outreach events. This 2018 version is the first NCTA Ranch horse event sanctioned by multiple regional and national equine associations including the American Quarter Horse Association.

Thirteen NCTA students will be competing and helping to manage the show with more than 130 competitors registered.

Stop by the spacious indoor arenas at the Red Willow County Fairgrounds for cutting contests on Friday afternoon and an evening program for equine sports psychology.

The working cow contest and performance classes run in two indoor arenas on Saturday, with cow work and conformation classes on Sunday.

A highlight on Saturday is the evening’s unique “bra race” for horseback riders to run obstacles and timed events sporting a cargo of water balloons.  Proceeds go toward cancer education with the Working Ranch Cowboys Association Punchy in Pink campaign.

It should be a great weekend for our Aggie students and horse lovers of all ages!

April 13-14 in Spearfish, S.D.

NCTA Aggie Rodeo is in action for their second rodeo this spring, this time at Black Hills State University in Spearfish, S.D., reports Rodeo Coach Taylor Rossenbach of Curtis.

Nine Aggies competed on April 6-7 at South Dakota State University’s rodeo in Brookings, S.D. Rio Whited of North Platte won third-place in the average in team roping, and Tara Spatz of Trotwood, Ohio was fifth in break-away roping.

Find NCTA returning to Nebraska rodeo action in Lincoln on April 20-21 when the University of Nebraska-Lincoln hosts the region’s contest at the Lancaster County Event Center.

Enjoy the great outdoors in beautiful Nebraska this week, and come out to help cheer on the NCTA Aggies at the Punchy in Pink Spring Roundup at McCook!

~ Dean Ron Rosati

University of Nebraska, Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture