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Ag students give back to community

(L-R) Jane Esau, Hayden Baehr, Bridget Beisel, Branigan Schaben, Maddie Yelken, Trent Tietjen, Kane Hasselbring, Jeremy Ondracek.
Students present check to Gage Co. Special Olympics.

Agriculture students at Southeast Community College’s Beatrice Campus are learning about giving back to the community as part of a leadership class. In class, students must come up with an idea for a leadership project, vote on it and complete it.

“The class did research on non-profits in the area and then voted during one of our class meetings,” said Amanda Fairley, Ag instructor. “The students decided to work the Traubel’s Popcorn stand in Beatrice where it’s all volunteer, and 70 percent of the proceeds are donated to a non-profit of their choice.”

The students worked the popcorn stand in shifts starting in October. When business did not go as planned because of weather, they needed to figure out what to do differently in order to raise more money. The students analyzed what else they could do. In addition to the popcorn stand, they decided to take orders from local businesses and SCC employees.

This proved to be much more successful as the students had more than 30 orders to fill and deliver. Local businesses that contributed included Pinnacle Bank, Twin Rivers, First State Bank, Carriage Motors, and Orscheln Farm & Home.

“I’ve definitely gained leadership skills during these projects,” said Bridget Beisel, Ag student. “I’ve learned not to be scared to try something new even though you’re not sure it’ll work out.”

Students raised nearly $200, which the popcorn stand rounded up so they could present a $100 check to each non-profit agency. They selected the Gage County Special Olympics and the Gage County 4-H.

“This leadership project has impacted my life by making me step out of my comfort zone and volunteer my time more,” added Madison Yelken, Ag student. “I believe giving back to your community is extremely important.”

The students presented the checks to the non-profit agencies on Monday, Dec. 9.


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Andrea Gallagher
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