story by Teri Edwards Tyler Kaess has found what most people search for, and more often than not, never find. A perfect day for Tyler […]
Jill Oatman is one busy girl.The eighteen year old cowgirl successfully juggles a strong academic schedule, extracurricular activities, a job, and participation in the Nebraska High School Rodeo Association.
She competes in the goat tying, breakaway roping, and team roping (heading for Lindy Woita of Atkinson), and is having her best year of high school rodeo. “It didn’t start clicking till this year,” she said. “This year, I’ve made a lot of accomplishments. I’ve set a goal of placing every weekend. I want to make it to state in breakaway and team roping (in addition to goat tying).” (She’s qualified her sophomore and junior years in goat tying.) “Finding what works for you and your horse and your style” is what’s helped her this year, she believes. “I’ve enjoyed it a lot, working my way up to this point.”
The Broken Bow, Neb. cowgirl is a senior at Broken Bow High School, where her classes include statistics, political behavior, Spanish IV, anatomy, physics, and research writing. Her favorite class is anatomy, because the teacher makes it fun to learn. Statistics class can be boring: “it’s very, very wordy and not in plain terms. It’s a lot of reading but not interesting reading.” Jill didn’t have to take a math class as a senior, but decided she’d take one to gain more knowledge before college.
She loves to read in her spare time, and finds most of her leisure time in the truck going from rodeo to rodeo. The last book she read for fun was Water for Elephants. She enjoyed the book, and saw the movie. For her extracurricular activities, Jill is in golf, 4-H, FFA (as treasurer), Spanish Club, National Honor Society, Spirit Squad, and Tri-M Honor Music Society. She plays the trumpet in band, and her team roping partner gave her a guitar for her birthday that hasn’t been played yet, but Jill hopes to take lessons some day.
Every afternoon after school, she makes her way to the Grassland Veterinary Hospital in Broken Bow where she works. Her goal is to be a veterinarian someday, and she plans on attending the University of Nebraska and then going to Iowa State, where she will earn her vet degree.
For the goat tying and team roping, she rides a 23 year old horse named Quigley who is “golden.” For the breakaway, she rides an eleven year old horse named Joey. She and Joey don’t always see eye to eye: “We’re both really stubborn and set in our ways. We clash a bit.”
Jill has an older brother, Lance, who competed in high school rodeo and now is a welder for their father’s business, V Bar Trailer Sales. She is the daughter of Kem and Kimberly Oatman.