All Invited to Invest In Future of Agriculture

Published on: December 6, 2019 ,

Dr. Tracy Kruse

All residents of northeast Nebraska are invited and encouraged to invest in the future of the area through the Nexus project at Northeast Community College, no matter what size their contribution might be.

“For the past few months we have been highlighting significant donations to the capital campaign to build new ag facilities at Northeast Community College,” said Dr. Tracy Kruse, associate vice president of development and external affairs and executive director of the Northeast Foundation. “Those large gifts are vital to the Nexus project, but we want everyone who believes in the future of agriculture and of small communities to be included in this effort.”

“Agriculture is the largest industry in Nebraska,” Kruse said. “More than 60% of the gross regional product and half of all jobs in the northeast part of the state are related to agriculture. Communities of all sizes, from Norfolk to Monawi, will only be successful if agriculture is thriving.”

Kruse has been leading an effort for nearly five years to design a “farm of the future” for Northeast ag students, and to raise private funds for that project. “It is important that every person in Northeast’s 20-county service area feels invested in this project,” she explained. “The students who graduate from the Northeast Community College ag department are the future farmers and ranchers of this area, and the future employees who will help agri-businesses grow. They are the next generation of residents of our small communities, the new families whose children will attend our smaller K-12 schools, join our churches, and make a difference in this region.”

“There is no doubt that we need more trained agricultural workers in this area,” Kruse continued, “and to help meet that need, Northeast has committed $10-million to enlarge and enhance ag facilities that will provide a state-of-the-art learning environment and help draw more students to Northeast, but another $13-million in private donations is needed to ensure a spring groundbreaking. The Acklie Charitable Foundation believes in this project enough to commit $5-million. Other foundations, businesses and individuals have made significant contributions ranging from $25,000 to $1-million, and now it is up to individuals and small businesses to show their support.”

Those who would like more information on the Nexus Campaign are urged to contact Kruse, at tracyk@northeast.edu, or call (402) 844-7056. Online donations may be made through the website agwaternexus.com. Checks may be mailed to: Nexus Campaign, Northeast Community College Foundation, P.O. Box 469, Norfolk, NE 68702-0469.

The initial phase of construction on the Northeast Community College Agriculture & Water Center of Excellence includes a new veterinary technology clinic and classrooms, and a new farm site with a farm office and storage, large animal handling facility and other farm structures for livestock operations. The new facilities will be located near the Chuck Pohlman Ag Complex on E. Benjamin Avenue in Norfolk.

All gifts to the College Foundation are tax deductible, and pledges can be paid over a five-year period, allowing a small recurring gift to become a significant contribution. The Nexus campaign is also accepting gifts of grain and livestock, appreciated assets, or through life insurance policies, wills, IRA’s and 401K accounts. More information on the ways to donate can be found on the website agwaternexus.com.