KHS cowboys ride off to college
‘Huckleberry’ Sandsness, Jordan Dollarhide will compete, go to school in Wyoming
KINGMAN - There are many things at the disposal of high school students to ensure an even-keeled transition into the college world, and the Kingman High FFA and Rodeo Club is one of them. Ray "Huckleberry" Sandsness and Jordan Dollarhide are both heading to Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington on rodeo scholarships to further their educations.
"Eastern Wyoming is the same junior college I went to," KHS advisor Sean Wright said. "I try to get scholarships for the kids. It's a great opportunity for the kids to continue doing this while getting their education."
Sandsness has been a part of the KHS program for all four of his years at the school, and he's been calf roping from a horse since he was 5. He's learned many traits due to the program that he'll be able to take to Wyoming with him.
"It's a lot of fun and a good experience," Sandsness said. "It gave me a lot of confidence and taught me to be quick, smooth and to keep it together."
Dollarhide said he finished in the top 10 in the state calf roping, and the time he spent in the rodeo club will have him prepared for the next level.
"I loved it," Dollarhide said. "It'll help with college getting me ready so I won't get nervous too much."
Sandsness and Dollarhide are receiving near full-rides to EWC and will only have to pay half of their room and board.
"That's real good," Sandsness said. He'll be entering the EWC welding program and would like to take some business courses as well.
Wright said he has been the program's advisor at KHS for the past 15 years and this year alone oversaw 138 students on the FFA side and 10 in rodeo.
"We have a lot of alumni," Wright said. "We stay tight and close."
The club held its yearly fundraiser last Saturday and Sunday at Wright's ranch in east Kingman. It was the 11th Annual Kingman FFA Roping competition and raised $5,200 for the club, just shy of its high of $6,000. The fundraiser accounts for most, if not all, of the club's budget for the year.
"It beats holding a car wash, that's for sure," Wright said. "And I don't have to do it every weekend."
Wright doesn't do everything himself as he gets plenty of help. Among many others, Jack and Stacy Fuller provided the cattle for the fundraiser's roping competition and even helped with its organization.
The rodeo club participates in 10 rodeos a year before the state and national competitions. The season begins in January.
"It's nice that we can go year-round here," said Wright.