Ashley Jensen was one of two graduates from the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources to receive the prestigious Alumni Awards at graduation this past semester. Jensen won the George P. Donaldson Award when she graduated with her Associates of Science back in Dec.
The Donaldson Award is given to students who have distinguished themselves through leadership and citizenship as well as being active in campus activities.
“I was ecstatic to receive it because I knew that the other two candidates were just as deserving of this award. I couldn’t keep the smile off of my face whenever I realized that the Alumni Association had chosen me.”
She was recognized at the graduation and received a $500 cash award. “I honestly feel super blessed that they saw something in me through my scholarship, leadership and citizenship, [and] I really appreciate the recognition.” Jensen was involved in a number of clubs and activities including Baptist Christian Ministries, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, Future Farmers of America, and assisted with the Ag in the Classroom program.
She also taught a pre-k through 3rd-grade on Wed. nights at the Ty Ty First Baptist Church as well as worked at the Georgia Museum of Agriculture.
She extended her help outside of her local community and also worked on the Louisiana Relief Effort which she described as “probably my favorite thing I’ve done with ABAC.”
When asked what motivates her to do so much and be so involved Jensen stated, “being involved in the community, whether it’s my own or one in another state, is one of my passions and I love to do it every chance that I get. The memories and relationships I made are like none other I’ve experienced.”
Jensen is continuing her education here at ABAC pursuing a Bachelor’s in Agricultural Education. “I’ll leave with a certification to teach secondary agricultural education, but one day I would like to become certified to teach in an elementary school setting so that I could begin an introduction agricultural program for younger students.”
Jensen hopes to reach older students as well by incorporating them through a mentorship program. “My end goal is to educate students in agriculture and life skills so that I and other teachers can help to prepare them for their future by having an education, being leaders and staying involved.” To her, ABAC is a school that offers many opportunities to people from all walks of life. She believes this is why the school continues to grow.
Jensen said her overall experience at ABAC has been incredible and when she graduates again what she’ll miss the most is the people here. “I’m really thankful for the way that ABAC has prepared me to enter the world and the workforce.”