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Tue, July 23

Q&A with Verde Valley's educator of the week: Chad Elmer
Agriculture teacher, Mingus Union High School, Cottonwood

Mingus Union High School AG teacher Chad Elmer is a “calm, consistent, and dedicated” teacher, says Genie Gee, principal at Mingus Union. VVN/Bill Helm

Mingus Union High School AG teacher Chad Elmer is a “calm, consistent, and dedicated” teacher, says Genie Gee, principal at Mingus Union. VVN/Bill Helm

COTTONWOOD – Genie Gee says that Mingus Union High School has a “role model, quiet leader, a strong presence” in AG teacher Chad Elmer.

Says Gee, the school’s principal, Elmer may be one of the school’s newer teachers. But he is a “calm, consistent, and dedicated teacher who is full of integrity and intellect.”

In his fifth year teaching at Mingus Union, Elmer’s passion for both agriculture education and FFA “is evident,” Gee says.

“And he lives by the creed that he has his students memorize.”

A 2007 graduate of Mingus Union, Elmer did not decide that he wanted to become an educator until after he had finished his post-secondary studies in Agriculture Business and Economics at the University of Arizona.

“When I noticed that the school had two positions open for Agriculture, I knew that it was something I needed to pursue,” Elmer recalls.

“Without the Agriculture or FFA program in my life growing up, I would not be the person that I am today.”

VVN: What can you ell us about your teaching style?

Elmer: The FFA & Agriculture education is a model of cooperative education and inquiry based learning.

The students are lead with a hands on approach and I spend my time acting as the facilitator and delegator.

VVN: Could you tell us something you find notable about your career as an educator?

Elmer: Two recent graduates will receive the American FFA degree at the FFA National Convention in Indianapolis this October.

Also our state-winning Mingus FFA Wildlife and Natural Resource team will represent Arizona this year competing at FFA National Convention’s Career Development Events.

VVN: Do you have a favorite quote or saying?

Elmer: I always tell my students that respect for themselves and others, plus a little hard work will help them achieve any future endeavor.

VVN: What do you like most about teaching?

Elmer: Building relationships, being there for the students all while seeing them grow into successful young adults.

VVN: If you were not a teacher, then what would you want to do?

Elmer: If I was not teaching I could see myself as a wildlife biologist or hunting guide.

-- Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @BillHelm42

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