INA, Ill. (April 7, 2014) – Over 200 Rend Lake College students and their families, along with faculty, staff and local businesses, are expected to attend the 38th Annual Agriculture Banquet this Thursday. The banquet is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. in Waugh Gymnasium.
Agriculture Associate Professor Kathy Craig said the banquet is another way for instructors and the college to recognize exceptional students for their efforts.
“It’s a chance for us to go through the highlights. We’re fortunate to have many of our students for two full years, so we get to look at them and tell them about the good things they’ve done in that time,” said Craig. “For all six areas of our program, we give an Outstanding Student Award to one student in each. We also do an Overall Outstanding Ag Student Award for someone who has gone above and beyond.”
Craig added there are a number of factors that go into the decisions, such as grades, attitude, and how the students have interacted with others while at RLC.
“These outstanding students are going to go out and be the best of the best, and we’re very proud of them,” she said. “They will be the greatest representatives of what we do here at the college, and we are very blessed to have them. Some of our students don’t want to walk at graduation, so this is kind of like graduation for them.”
Additionally, there will be some unique awards specific to the students, plus the Doug Leeck Service Award. All award recipients are kept secret until the night of the banquet, where they will receive a plaque.
This year, the guest speaker will be Cailah Brock, Benton native and now resident of Herrin, who graduated from RLC in 2011 with an Associate Degree in Agricultural Business. She is now employed as a product specialist at Precision Laboratories. Craig expects Brock will talk about her experiences at RLC and what future graduates should know before entering the workplace.
“The question we’d like to hear from her is, if she had to be back in these students’ shoes, what would she want to know that no one told her, for those going on in their education or those getting starting a career,” said Craig.
During the banquet a slideshow of the past year will be presented.