ECC Ag program selected for National Honor
Ellsworth Community College in Iowa Falls, Iowa is one of only six programs nationwide that received the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE) Outstanding Postsecondary/Adult Agricultural Education Program Award on Dec. 1 at the NAAE annual convention in Las Vegas.Ellsworth Community College Ag Program wins National Award
Shown left to right: Ray Nash, National Association of Agricultural Educators president, ECC Assistant Professor of Agriculture Kevin Butt, and Matthew Gonzales, Corporate Manager – Organizational Development, Toyota Motor Sales. received a two-year lease on a Toyota Tundra, an expense paid trip to attend the NAAE convention in Las Vegas, and a special dinner in their honor one night during the convention.
Kevin Butt has been the Assistant Professor of Agriculture at Ellsworth Community College (ECC) since 2004. His teaching philosophy is based on three ideas: students should be provided an interactive, community-based learning experience, students need to learn to analyze theoretical information and apply gained knowledge, and academic and extracurricular involvement must work to develop students’ communication, leadership and citizenship skills. With these goals in mind, Butt has created a program that provides students with theoretical and scientific knowledge in agriculture, while supplying extensive hands-on experiences to apply that knowledge.
There are currently three Associate of Applied Science degrees offered at ECC: Farm Management, Agribusiness, and Agriculture Science Transfer. Each of Butt’s courses require students to be able to use a variety of technology equipment to prepare them for their future careers including advanced computer programs and equipment specific to agriculture. The students also maintain a 133 acre farm near the college campus. To gain additional hands-on experience, all students are required to complete at least one internship, depending on their degree program.
“Kevin is a first rate instructor who cares about student learning and teaching up-to-date standards, and he has demonstrated a proficient ability to teach a variety of hands-on agriculture topics including more than 20 different higher education courses in animal and plant content,” said Dr. Christopher A. Russell, Chief Academic Officer of Ellsworth and Marshalltown Community College. “His work ethic, attention to detail, and his problem-solving capabilities make him an excellent candidate for agricultural honors.”
Each of the six regional winners received a two-year lease on a Toyota Tundra, an expense paid trip to attend the NAAE convention in Las Vegas, and a special dinner in their honor one night during the convention. Toyota sponsors the Outstanding Postsecondary/Adult Agricultural Education Program Award as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. NAAE is the professional association for agricultural educators. Its mission is “professionals providing agricultural education for the global community through visionary leadership, advocacy and service.” The NAAE office is located in Lexington, Ky.