The Agricultural Development Association hosted their annual Ag. Day at WTAMU’s Nance Ranch on Sept. 8. The reunion was put together for the sole purpose of raising money to help recruit students world wide for WT and the College of Agricultural Sciences.
“It gives me an opportunity to interact at a higher level,” Trent Tyson, ADA president, said.
The ADA is made up of volunteer alumni and supporters who strive to give back to the University and support the students who are attending WT.
The more money ADA can raise during Ag. Day, the more they can spend for recruitment purposes. The funds are used for hats, key chains and many other tools to help inform students of WT’s Ag. Department and all it has to offer. In 2008, Ag. Day raised a total of $11,500 between the live and silent auctions. The next year enrollment was topped at 490 students. $43,000 was put toward recruitment in 2011, as enrollment increased to 642 students in 2012. This year ADA raised $50,000 with the live auction alone and recruited 131 freshmen from Texas and 32 out-of-state students.
The first reunion was held in 1998 with only three men in attendance. Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences Dr. Don Topliff reported approximately three to four hundred in attendance this year.
“One word. Awesome,” Toplif said.
Lacey Roberts, an Agricultural Media and Communications Major and Agricultural Ambassador, was amazed to see support for the department and her dream.
“I can’t wait to be in this position, to give back like they did for me,” Roberts said.
This year’s activities consisted of a free meal and a live and silent auction. It was a time, not only for people to donate, but also a time for current students and alumni to meet and reunite with old friends. Some items sold in the auctions included hand-made jewelry, hand-painted shoes and a signed Trevor Brazil cowboy hat, shirt and poster. Everything was donated, from the meal to the items auctioned off.