Allyson Smith of Canton joins the faculty at Spoon River College as a full-time agriculture teacher. She is a graduate of Canton High School, where she was a member of FFA and active in a number of FFA contests, including Soils, Agronomy, Horticulture, Electricity, Poultry, Ag Business, Parliamentary Procedure, Public Speaking, and Forestry. She also served as president and vice-president, and remains a dedicated advocate of FFA.
“FFA is so much more than corn, soybeans, and cows,” Smith said. “And it’s often at a contest that a student finds what their interest really is.” For her, that interest was agronomy.
After graduating high school in 2015, Smith enrolled at WIU for Ag Education where she was a member of the Weed Science team, a student recruiter for the School of Ag, and also worked on the university farm under Dr. Mark Bernards. It was there she added researching to the list of things she liked doing, so she switched up her major and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Agriculture and a minor in Agronomy in 2018.
Smith then transferred to Michigan State University to work on a master’s degree. While there, she participated in extension events and had the opportunity to teach an introduction to Weed Science lab, where she discovered yet another passion. “I knew deep down that teaching was what I was meant to do.”
In 2020, Smith graduated with a Master of Science Crop and Soil with a focus on Agronomy and Weed Science. She accepted a position with the University of Missouri as a research specialist. When the teaching position at Spoon River College opened up, Smith called it her “dream job.”
“I am excited to be back in my hometown and to have the opportunity to share my knowledge and education with the future of agriculture,” said Smith.
Smith and her husband Dalton have settled into their new home in Canton that they share with their adopted dogs Bailey, Cricket, and Roscoe. When not at home, they are most likely out fishing, camping, and taking pictures.
Spoon River College is a two-year, public community college in West Central Illinois dedicated to providing students a quality education. With campuses and Community Outreach Offices in Canton and Macomb and Learning Centers in Havana and Rushville, Spoon River College serves students in a 1,566 square mile area in Fulton, Mason, McDonough, and Schuyler counties. For more information, visit www.src.edu.