Oklahoma Higher Education Campus E-Clips sponsored by the Communicators Council

September-October 2015

OPSU's Weeder Named Walt Garrison Award Winner

The Walt Garrison Award, given through the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA) each year, highlights numerous qualities that are part of the cowboy code of ethics including loyalty, commitment, honesty, perseverance and most importantly, leadership. The award was established in honor of former Dallas Cowboys football player and professional cowboy, Walt Garrison.

Each of the 11 regions in the NIRA nominates one student-athlete as their regional representative for the Walt Garrison Award. The award is given to one individual during the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) based on the decision of the NIRA board of directors.

Shelbie Weeder, Oklahoma Panhandle State University senior, has dedicated her life to the service of others. From her role as the Central Plains Region student director to the position as a University Ambassador, Weeder is a natural leader. The Holly, Colo., native accepted a large dose of responsibility early in life through her involvement in 4-H, FFA and sports. She was not only heavily involved, but excelled in all areas as an all-state basketball player and two-time Kansas State High School Rodeo Association Breakaway Roping Champion. Her resume inside the classroom is just as impressive. Weeder is continuously recognized as an honor student. She is currently pursuing a double major in agricultural education and animal science and hopes to become an agricultural instructor and FFA adviser.

On the OPSU campus, Weeder is involved in FFA, Women in Ag, Block and Bridle and the Rodeo Team, where her impact has been felt to the highest degree.

Her teammates seek her guidance in the practice pen as Weeder is known for her advice in the roping box as well as her positive and uplifting spirit. In the medical absence of Coach Craig Latham, Weeder has played an instrumental role in the leadership of the team and is always the first person people call when they need a helping hand. Aside from her peers, Weeder loves to help the younger generation of cowboys and cowgirls. Throughout junior rodeos, a flock of little cowpokes looked up to Weeder as their role model both in and out of the arena. She truly embodies the essence of the Walt Garrison Award.

Weeder was recognized during the CNFR as the recipient of the Walt Garrison Award on the national level. She was honored with a belt buckle and a $2,500 scholarship. OPSU will also receive $2,500 in acknowledgement of Weeder’s accomplishment.

“Receiving the Walt Garrison Award is the biggest highlight of my college rodeo career,” Weeder said. “I am very grateful and humbled that I was chosen for this award.”

Due to her service as regional director, Weeder has one year of rodeo eligibility remaining.

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