Farm Talk

Front page stories

September 26, 2012

Giving back to the community with agriculture

Parsons, Kansas — by Danielle Beard

“It’s all just part of the job. Girard Agriculture Education Instructor, Joe Curran, humbly said. “Any other ag teacher could have easily received this award as well.”

Curran was recently named as the 2012 affiliate recipient of the Outstanding Teacher in Community Service from the Kansas Association for Career and Technical Education (K-ACTE).

Curran’s 23 years of teaching experience as an agriculture eduction instructor and an FFA advisor have brought him back to Girard High School, the same school he, himself graduated from in 1985.

“It’s been great being back here, in a community I already know, and getting to raise my children here,” he says.

Curran and his wife Kim are both graduates of Kansas State University, where two of their five children are currently attending.

Curran credits programs like FFA and 4-H for giving many kids, as well as his own, a good foundation for life.

“Teaching ag has given me the opportunity to watch kids grow and mature, make new choices, and expand their horizons,” he explains.

Curran teaches animal science, agriculture fabrication, agriculture construction, and horticulture.

Since he began his teaching career in 1989, Curran  has been a member of the Kansas Association of Agriculture Educators (KAAE), National Association of Agriculture Educators (NAAE), Kansas Association for Career and Technical Education, (K-ACTE) and Association of Career and Technical Educators (ACTE).

An active member in his community, he serves on the Crawford County Fair Board, the Kansas Livestock Association as a county director, National Cattlemen’s Association, the Wildcat District Extension, Farm Bureau, member of St. Michael’s Catholic Church, and the Knights of Columbus.

Since 1991, Curran has served KAAE on the state legislative committee, and the mentoring committee since 2006. Along with attending eight Region II Conferences, he actively participated in planning and promoting the conferences hosted by the Kansas membership.

Since he began his career he has never missed a CTE Summer Conference and accredits the conference for sending him back to the classroom with a refreshed positive attitude each fall.

Curran says that time spent with colleagues during conferences and meetings is where great ideas are exchanged to make attendees better educators.

“I don’t know if there is any one program I’m involved in that makes me more of a community service leader,” Curran said. “Being involved with FFA, you become involved in a little bit of everything.”

Curran credits the success of Girard High School’s 130 plus student agriculture program to having two teachers.

“The kids are who really benefit from  a multi-teacher program,” he says. “I wouldn’t be able to do a lot of things for our program if it wasn’t for our other ag teacher.”

Curran says Girard’s other ag teacher, Alan Boultinghouse and himself are able to divide up their strengths and time, which gives the kids the opportunity to get more out of the classroom and out of FFA.

Another fun fact about Curran, he has a published book.

“It’s more of a book you’d buy in a feed store, as opposed to a book store,” he jokes. “That’s just more of the audience it’s geared toward.”

The book, “One More Clean Shirt,” is a compilation of stories and jokes.

“I love to tell jokes and stories,” he says. “When my kids were little I used to tell them bedtime stories, then I began telling stories and jokes to relate in the classroom to what I was teaching. Then one February during snow days I sat down and wrote my stories, it only took me three days to write the entire book.”

Curran says being nominated for this award was an honor.

“I’m not normally one to brag but I felt honored that someone thought enough of me to take the time to nominate me,” he explains.

According to Curran, he does appreciate the light it’s shed on Girard’s ag program and all the hard work the kids do for the community.

“This ag program is a strong ambassador to the strength and support of the community,” Curran says.

“I enjoy giving back to a community that gave me so much,” he says. “I can’t imagine teaching anywhere else or any other subject. It’s been a good life.”£

1
Text Only
Front page stories
  • shoup_coltrain_0028.jpg Big chill, little damage in SE Kan. corn fields

    Corn seedlings turned brown by recent cold temperatures had growers speed-dialing their crop insurance agents last week.
    For most, though, it may be one of those “not-as-bad-as-it-looks” situations.
    K-State Agronomy Specialist Doug Shoup and Wildcat Extension District agents Josh Coltrain and Keith Martin were out in fields late last week surveying the situation.

    April 22, 2014 5 Photos

  • StockersFP.jpg USDA beefs up production forecast

    In USDA’s latest forecast, total meat production is predicted to be lower in 2014 despite higher beef production and price expectations.
    And on the crop side, the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, issued April 9, helped ease fears of lower crop prices.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • el_nino.jpg El Niño return likely but little crop impact expected — for now

    Long-range weather forecasters expect an El Niño return sometime this year but its timing and strength are still beyond the reach of reliable predictability.
    Odds for an El Niño occurrence increase as temperatures warm in the Pacific. Above-average sea surface temperatures are currently being measured over much of the eastern tropical Pacific.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jim_McCann_0001.jpg Speaking up for beef

    Jim McCann wants cattlemen to have a seat at the table — and he wants beef to be the main course.

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • prescribed_burn.jpg Activity heats up on the prairie when you’re going to grass

    Going to grass is always an exciting time, but getting ready for it is lots of hard work that involves far more than opening a gate.
    And most of it happens well ahead of green-up.

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • RoddMoesel_cmyk.jpg Gardens are gateway to agriculture says Okla. Hall of Famer

    April 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Enlow_tractor.jpg Enlows celebrate half-century heritage

    March 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • HF_14_shooter_0161.jpg HorseFest sizzles Springfield with huge trade show, education and entertainment

    Internationally-known horseman Guy McLean set the bar high at last week’s HorseFest in Springfield, Mo., and a full slate of savvy horsemen and women, hot competition and the area’s biggest equine trade show added up to a great weekend for thousands of area equine enthusiasts.

    March 25, 2014 5 Photos

  • KSU-Sylvester.jpg Area families earn ‘Master’ honors

    March 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • Bradshaw_tractor-025.jpg An answer to a prayer

    “If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day, but teach him to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.” Applying those words to real life became an answer to a prayer for Carthage, Mo., farmer Larry Peters, and the Fairview Christian Church.

    March 11, 2014 4 Photos

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Seasonal Content