Outstanding ACTion

ACT club receives $1,500 from national competition

The MU chapter of Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT) was awarded second place in the Yamaha-ACT Scholarship contest for their development of a public service campaign about ATV safety. The chapter received an award of $1,500.

The ACT club developed a social media package, including a Facebook page, YouTube, Twitter and Pinterest Board, t-shirt design and video story board for their submission. Yamaha usually awards one chapter award, but changed the program and awarded four chapter awards. This was the MU ACT’s first time participating in the national competition.

Junior Breanne Brammer created the Facebook page, Senior Kari Weis created the video story board and put together the application, sophomore Maggie Hardwick created the Pinterest Board and junior Courtney Leeper designed the t-shirt.

The t-shirt design submission made by Courtney Leeper.The t-shirt design submission made by Courtney Leeper.

“Most chapters are able to take on this type of a project as a class assignment, but our ACT leaders completed their campaign on their own time simply to benefit the organization, and that speaks volumes about the quality of students we have in Science and Agricultural Journalism,” said Sharon Wood-Turley, faculty advisor.

“Your chapter submitted a quality application, and we are excited to be able to support your students’ career development through their attendance at the Ag Media Summit in Buffalo,” said Van Holmes, Public Relations Manager of Yamaha Motor Corporation, in a letter to the MU ACT chapter.

The MU chapter is using the award money to send member to the Agricultural Media Summit in Buffalo, N.Y., August 3-7.

This annual event is the largest meeting in the United States of the agricultural industry’s top writers, editors, photographers, publishers and agricultural communicator specialists, according to the Ag Media Summit website. This is a joint meeting of the American Agricultural Editors’ Association, the Livestock Publications Council and the American Business Media Agri-Council. This industry-wide gathering of agricultural communicators offers one of the best opportunities for professional improvement and industry networking. More than 600 attend this event each year, and the InfoExpo annually exceeds 85 booths.

“This award is important because the Ag Media Summit is such a great opportunity,” said Courtney Leeper, junior science and agricultural journalism major and MU ACT president. “The Summit is professionals and students learning together and from each other. The more members we can the better. It’s expensive, especially being in Buffalo this year, and this makes sending students more of a possibility. We are a small chapter, yet very talented.”

The Mission of National ACT is to build relationships among agricultural communication professionals and college students and faculty, to provide professional and academic development for members and to promote agriculture through communications efforts.

The participants in the contest were given this information to focus on:

Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., recommends that all riders take an approved training course before operating an ATV or Side-By-Side (SxS) vehicle. When riding, always avoid paved surfaces and public roads, wear appropriate riding and protective gear at all times, never carry passengers unless the vehicle is designed to do so, never engage in stunt riding, do no operate while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, avoid excessive speeds, and be particularly careful on difficult terrain. Always follow logical, common-sense rules. Remember to “tread lightly,” ride in a responsible manner, and respect the environment as well as all state and local laws. Always read and follow the safety recommendations in the owner’s manual before operating an ATV or SxS vehicle.