The young agriculture career-minded and college-bound youth within our communities are such a valuable asset to our area and the cattle industry that resides within the Sandhills of Nebraska.
With the high cost of future agriculture leaders' education, the SCA scholarship funds and awards are such a crucial benefit to our youth and enable them to bring back home and apply to the agriculture business field.
One cannot stress how important it is to our industry how vital each and everyone remains and returns to the community contributes to its continued and future success. The amount of youth that choose to return is low. That is why every means possible should be applied to encourage our youth to consider and select a path of returning to their roots and family Ranches or establishing a new ranch business.
Most of the returning youth know the hardships against them. They have lived and helped with the business during their young lives and experienced hard work, adversity, and success that encompass ranch life.
I was born and raised a rancher. I was one of those that knew from a very young age that I wanted to be just like my dad and grandpa - a "Rancher." I want to see this ranch that has survived and been successful for over 100 years continue to thrive and be successful for generations to come.
One cannot argue how lucky we are to live in an area of wide-open landscapes, clean air, and the natural abundance of water and grassland. Our factory is not made of brick and stone, nor is our product artificial. The factory is a living thing, and its product is one from which many humans on this earth benefit.
I am so thankful for this lifestyle and hope that our youth will continue to bless us with their return to the ranch to help keep the cattle industry strong and thriving.
The SCA recognizes the need to support the future of agriculture and the beef industry. The Association supports our youth through our scholarship program. The scholarship fund is made possible by donations obtained from the silent and live auctions at our Annual Convention. Auction items are generously received throughout the year from many patrons and then auctioned off to the highest bidder. The continued success of the Scholarship program comes from the fruition of the SCA convention auction.
This year, the SCA scholarship committee award $9000 total in scholarships. A committee picks SCA scholarship awards with consideration of essays and interviews and academic success documentation throughout the student's academic career. Five scholarships totaling $7500 from the SCA funds are awarded two $2000 awards, one $1500 award, and two $1000 awards. Additionally, the Howard Wright scholarship of one $500 and the Buzz Kime scholarship of one $1000. The Howard Wright and Buzz Kime Memorial scholarships are picked with the involvement of the families.
To be eligible for the scholarship, one must be a child or grandchild of an SCA member. There was an increase in the participation of applicants who applied for the SCA scholarship this year.
This gives me hope that more youth are considering an agricultural-based education with an indication that they will return home with knowledge learned from their education to work within the agricultural and cattle industry.
Best of luck to all of the scholarship applicants in your pursuit of higher education. Ryan Adamson