Hunter ed graduates 34

DON MARTIN/For the Miner<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->Graduating class! This is the class photo for graduating class R-2-2011 from the Arizona Hunter Education program. These 34 students ranged in age from 9 to 58 years old and received 32 hours of instruction over a two weekend period from volunteer instructors.

DON MARTIN/For the Miner<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->Graduating class! This is the class photo for graduating class R-2-2011 from the Arizona Hunter Education program. These 34 students ranged in age from 9 to 58 years old and received 32 hours of instruction over a two weekend period from volunteer instructors.

The Arizona hunter education program graduated another 34 students Sunday afternoon at the 7 Mile Hill Range.

Ages of students ranged from 9 to 58, and they completed over 32 hours of instruction during the two-weekend class. While most of the students were from the Kingman area, one student was from Colorado and another student came from Parker.

Bob Shaw was the chief instructor of the class. His staff included hunter education volunteer instructors Jim Rich, Tony Keller, Tammy Bollinger, Kris Hendricks, Bill Riehle, Robert Rodriguez, Scott Snay, Matt Snay and Jim Jett. Rad Green and Page McDonald also assisted as did new instructors Jay Chan and Mike Cudney.

Besides a lot of homework, students had to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in both the classroom and outdoors.

Students were instructed in a number of subjects including hunter responsibility, ethics, game and fish laws, rules and regulations, firearms and archery safety, and wildlife identification.

Students also had to demonstrate their knowledge and proficiency with a bow and arrow, and by firing a .22-caliber rifle from various shooting positions. Students went on simulated hunts where they had to make decisions on shoot/don't shoot scenarios. Then at the end of the day, each student also had to pass a 60 question final test.

As part of the class, the instructors chose four students that were given the title of honor graduates. Those students were selected by consensus of the volunteer instructors for being outstanding students.

As a result of being chosen for that honor, each of them gets their name submitted to the Arizona Game & Fish Department for a drawing for an all expense paid pheasant hunt near Cordes Junction in 2012.

Those chosen included 13-year-old Cody Waterman, who was the class's top honor graduate, followed by 9-year-old Madilynn "Maddie" Rogers, 10-year-old Hunter Sturgill and 10-year-old Garrett Martin.

Waterman also drew the name of Dalton Long as the winner of the good student award. This award is given to one in the class who had homework done on time, didn't cause any disciplinary problems and participated in class activities. Both Waterman and Long, along with a parent will be entitled to an overnight fishing trip on Lake Mead with Hunter Education Master Instructor Don Martin in 2012.

Brandon Mussman won a varmint hunt with Chief Instructor Bob Shaw, and Karli Moline won a turkey hunt that was donated by Calvin Andrews from DAC Ranch.

In addition, a number of other prizes were given to each young graduate in the class. New 10 X 50 binoculars donated by the Mohave Arms Collector Association were awarded to five students, as were informational DVDs supplied by Jay Nistetter of Rhino Calls.

Rodney Swope was also given a pair of new binoculars as the winner of the Most Inspirational award as determined by Master Instructor Don Martin.

Gunnar Erickson, a wildlife manager in the western sector of Mohave County was the special guest speaker.

The next resident hunter education class will be held in March 2012.