SYRACUSE — Wawasee High School’s Work-Based Learning program is a college and career readiness course designed to provide opportunities for students to explore and experience careers that require additional degrees or certifications following high school.
The emphasis of the experience is on applying skills developed through instruction and on learning new career competencies at the internship site. This paid or unpaid internship is tailored to the unique needs and interests of the student and is considered a high school capstone experience toward graduation and the fulfillment of the student’s meaningful future plan. There are 60-80 juniors and seniors in the WBL program.
Student of the Month for February is Ellamae Reiff.
“We are so proud of Ella for being chosen as Student of the Month,” said Sara Randolph of Telos Farm. “Ella plays a critical role to the daily functions of our horse farm, Telos Farm Warmbloods. We breed and raise young horses for future careers in sport, such as dressage and eventing.
“The care needed to provide quality nutrition, housing, farm husbandry, and basic training is extensive with horses, and Ella gladly jumped right in! Ella ensures that our broodmares, babies, and riding horses have feed and vitamins measured precisely, fresh clean water in their stalls and pastures, manages manure removal to ensure low parasite-burdens, maintains a tidy barn, and gives personal care to every horse.
“A horse person gets to know her animals, to know them so well that when something is slightly amiss, it becomes forefront! Ella treats the horses as her own and I know 100% that she will notice if something is slightly amiss with any of them. Catching these things early can save a lot of heartache and vet bills! Ella also enjoys grooming and handling the horses, making sure they receive plenty of quality attention, and look great to boot.
“We rely on Ella to manage our horse farm and we could not do it without her excellent diligence and expertise. Our herd is her herd.”
Following are some questions posed to Ellamae by the Pathways Cooperative office:
1. Tell us about yourself.
“I am currently a senior at Wawasee High School. While attending, I became involved with FFA. I’ve held many positions throughout my years, but the one that I feel honored in holding is being the chapter president for the 2020-21 school year. During my junior year, I was able to join the National Honor Society. Also, I’m currently going into my 10th year of participating in 4-H with my club, the Pierceton Hayseeds. I also attend church at Dutchtown Brethren along with my family.
“Along with my parents, I have one younger sibling — a brother that attends Wawasee Middle School. We’re both involved with my parents grain farm operation. In particular, we help with a variety of tasks during the spring planting and fall harvest.”
2. Why is the company you work for good for your future?
“Telos Farm Warmbloods is good for my future because it has given me the opportunity to improve myself on taking responsibility for taking care of the horses while managing the other aspects of my life. Also, it has improved my skill in communicating and asking questions.”
3. What are your future goals/plans?
“I will be attending Purdue University in the fall to major in agricultural communications and agribusiness with a minor in criminology. As I’ve grown up, I have gained a passion for advocating for the agriculture industry. Upon graduation, I hope to get a job that uses my newly gained knowledge in the agricultural communications and/or agribusiness field.”