Sophomore’s journey to OSU began with mentorship and scholarship

Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources agricultural sciences natural resources

Grace Adams

Sophomore Grace Adams’ love for leadership, service and agriculture led her to Oklahoma State University from the Pacific Northwest.

Grace, an agribusiness major from Dayton, Ore., was heavily involved in Future Farmers of America while in high school. Through FFA, she met Oklahoma State University alumna and mentor, Joenelle Wetzler, the former assistant director of the McKnight Scholars Leadership program at OSU.

“Joenelle approached me and told me there was an opportunity with the McKnight Scholars Leadership Program and I should apply,” Grace said. “At that point, I had never thought about going out-of-state.”

“I knew that Grace would be an ideal McKnight Scholar,” Joenelle said. “She is someone who is from and remains invested in rural communities, seeks development as a leader, is of high character, and wants to make positive change.”

The McKnight Scholars Leadership Program focuses on out-of-state, rural students with a passion for service and extraordinary potential for influence. The scholarship program opened the door for Grace to attend OSU.

“OSU and the McKnight Scholar Program has provided Grace with a space to be challenged, to ideate, and to learn in community with other intelligent and driven young people,” Joenelle said.

When Grace decided to visit Stillwater, she said she could “feel the magic.” After meeting with fellow students and staff, Grace knew she wanted to attend OSU.

Grace remembers Joenelle encouraging her, “‘if you aren’t uncomfortable, you aren’t growing.’”

Grace does not take that advice lightly. She looks for new ways to get outside of her comfort zone everyday. This summer, Grace will be a facilitator for National FFA’s Washington Leadership Conference. She believes this will allow her to grow and to meet her future career goals.

Grace is still exploring options for her future career, but plans on trying as many different opportunities as she can.

“I am hoping I continue to take new and uncomfortable opportunities,” Grace said. “I am hoping that opens a door to something I want to do.”

Grace would like to thank her scholarship donors for their generosity. As an out-of-state student paying for college on her own, she would not be able to do it without them.

“Because of them,” she said, “the trajectory of my life has completely changed. I don’t know where I would be without Oklahoma State University.”

Grace Adams Group