The retirement of long-time Kansas State Research & Extension Agent Kathy Lupfer-Nielsen earlier this spring left a void in her position in the Post Rock Extension offices in the basement of the Lincoln County Courthouse. In early June, new agent Ashley Goudey filled that void and the Junction City native says she enjoys the “small town feeling” of the area. The Sentinel sent Goudey some questions recently asking her thoughts on her new position. The questions, and her responses, are below:
What is your title and what are some of your job responsibilities? I am the Nutrition, Food Safety and Health Extension Agent for the Post Rock District. My job responsibility is to give trusted, research based information to the people of our district. That can include programming in schools, senior centers or for any community groups. I also write news columns and answer any questions that are nutrition or health related.
Do you office in Lincoln County all the time? I live in Ellsworth and commute to Lincoln each day. I am in my Lincoln County office most days unless I have a program or meeting in Mitchell, Jewell, Smith, or Osborne County.
Where was your last job and what is your experience in the field? This is my first job after graduating from Kansas State, but I worked at Big Lakes Developmental Center in Manhattan while going to school. I have also worked with children in the classroom setting while I worked as a paraprofessional, substitute teacher and an after school program leader. I have gained nutritional experience through Kansas State University and also in my own kitchen experimenting. A couple summers ago I was given the opportunity to volunteer for an over 55 adult workout group where I worked with Kinesiology students to design a wellness group which included both exercises and nutritional advice.
Tell us about your education. What degrees or certifications do you hold and from where? Out of high school I went to Barton County Community College and earned my associate degree in Great Bend. I graduated from Kansas State University in May with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Nutrition. I am also a certified instructor and proctor for ServSafe which teaches safe food handling practices.
What made you want to take this job? When I saw this position opening in the Salina Journal I was immediately excited. While going through college, I had an idea of what I would want to do after graduation and that always had included educating on the importance of nutrition and health to communities. After reading the requirements of my position I soon found that this was exactly what I was looking for in a career.
What is your impression of Lincoln County so far? My first impression was that the communities are much smaller than where I had grown up but I really like that small town feeling! Everyone has been very welcoming and helpful and the lack of traffic congestion is a big plus! I am very happy to be in Lincoln County and I can’t wait to get out and meet everyone.