For a century, thousands of agriculturalists across Nebraska and the U.S. have at one point during their academic career called the campus on the rolling hills at Curtis, Nebraska, “home.” On Aug. 9-11, alumni, former faculty and friends of the University of Nebraska-Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture will gather for a reunion and celebration of their alma mater.
No matter its official title during its 100-year history, today’s two-year technical college, NCTA, is commonly known simply as “the ag school at Curtis.”
Welcoming alumni and friends to the campus will be the newest resident to Curtis, Dr. Ron Rosati, who joined the University of Nebraska system as the NCTA Dean on July 1.
“NCTA has been providing outstanding technical education to the agricultural communities of Nebraska and surrounding states for 100 years,” notes Rosati. “I feel honored to have the opportunity to serve with my friends and colleagues in the NCTA community as we move into our second century, continuing to provide graduates ready to address important issues for the residents of Nebraska.”
The Nebraska School of Agriculture, a high school, was established by the Nebraska Legislature in 1911, with classes starting Sept. 9. Students later attended UNSA –University of Nebraska School of Agriculture, UNSTA - University of Nebraska School of Technical Agriculture, and NCTA – Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture.
The two-year technical agriculture college opened in fall 1965, and operated simultaneously for three years with the high school. The final high school class graduated in spring 1968.
“NCTA implements its unique mission in an extraordinary fashion due to the dedication of highly qualified faculty and staff,” Rosati said. “That mission continues to grow in importance as we see an increasing demand placed on our agricultural industries to provide even more food for a growing world, to emerge as a source of energy, and to play a leading role in resolving the country’s environmental issues.”
Alumni, former faculty and family members, local residents and agricultural industry partners are invited to attend the reunion and centennial celebration, Rosati said.
Registration and schedule details are available at www.NCTA.unl.edu, or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or telephone (308) 367-5222.
On Friday, Aug. 9, the centennial activities include a chuck wagon dinner and cowboy poetry by NCTA alumnus R.P. Smith of Broken Bow. Saturday’s agenda features campus and farm tours, alumni meetings, agriculture-related contests and games, and an evening banquet, program and dance.
• 1911 – The Nebraska Legislature established Nebraska School of Agriculture (NSA) for high school students.
• Sept. 9, 1913 – Nebraska School of Agriculture began high school classes.
• 1946 – NSA became the University of Nebraska School of Agriculture (UNSA).
• 1965 – UNSA became part of the land-grant university system, supplementing the UN-Lincoln mission.
• Fall 1965 to Spring 1968 - Both the high school and the two-year college operated simultaneously with the final UNSA High School class graduating in 1968.
• 1968 – UNSA became the University of Nebraska School of Technical Agriculture (UNSTA).
• 1994 – UNSTA changed to University of Nebraska-Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture (NCTA).
• 2013 – Aug. 9-11 University of Nebraska NCTA will observe “A Century of Ag Education” in Curtis.