Collin Kelley is treasurer of his FFA chapter this year and the experience — along with his participation in agriculture classes, agriculture competitions and Supervised Ag Experiences — has given him a well-rounded education.
Collin, is a 16-year-old junior at Shelley High School and is seriously considering a career as an electrical lineman.
“I have friends and a cousin who are linemen and they make really good money and it looks like a fun job where I’d learn a lot,” he said.
Kelley helps around the family farm by moving irrigation pipe and working cattle. His parents are Craig and Andrea Kelley, and his grandparents are the late Gerald Kelley and Helen Kelley, who raises cattle east of Shelley and in the Bone area.
Last fall, Kelley learned a lot about livestock handling at Oklahoma State University’s animal science department’s feedlot in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The stop was one of several the Shelley High School FFA students made on their way to the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis.
“They mainly work cattle the same way we do except they don’t use hot shots, horses or ropes. They use flags or sticks instead,” he said. “We also learned a lot about parasites, and how they’ve computerized the operation of pivots and control them with a tablet.”
The students also learned from educational stops in Texas at livestock shows and a ranch rodeo.
“Visiting various places in Texas was the biggest highlight of the trip,” he said.
Another highlight is each spring when the Kelley family has agriculture and FFA students help them brand at their Shelley ranch. The family has hosted the educational event for 45 years.
“It’s fun to get all my friends together where they learn how to work with cattle and what it takes to work with them,” he said.