This year the Ouray County Rodeo Association (OCRA) selected
Caitlin Sanchez as the recipient of the 2019 OCRA scholarship. In
May, Caitlin graduated with honors from Ridgway High School
where she lettered in volleyball, soccer and basketball. Two
weeks prior to her graduation from High School, Caitlin walked
the stage at the Technical College of the Rockies (TCR) where
she earned her EMT Certificate. To earn her EMT certificate
she attended TCR 2 nights per week and on Saturdays con-
current with Ridgway High School classes. She is very thank-
ful for the support of her parents, Erin & Steve Stadelman,
and her siblings, Josh, Brandon, Jaysten, and Wyatt, who
encouraged her to push through the challenge of balancing
her busy schedule.
Caitlin feels especially fortunate to have grown-up in Ridgway
at a nearby ranch just outside of town. Outside of school, she
has been active in the local San Juan Critters & Crafts 4H club
where she showed in dog, swine, poultry and horse. Her love for
horses led her to adopt a wild mustang from the Book Cliff reserve
near Grand Junction. She named him Whiskey and through her hard work,
determination and a few falls, she trained him the basics. Caitlin also enjoys scrapbooking with her mom, mountain biking and travelling. She feels incredibly lucky to have traveled to both Spain and Asia (Vietnam/Cambodia) through Ridgway School sponsored trips. Her advice to students is to “try everything and anything because knowledge is power.”
Caitlin has supported the OCRA by serving as Rodeo Royalty - Princess Attendant (2015), Queen Attendant (2017), and Queen (2018). As Rodeo Royalty, she represented Ouray County and promoted the sport of rodeo by participating in the Ouray 4th of July and Ridgway Labor Day parades and promoting the Ouray County Rodeo by attending the rodeos in Montrose and Norwood. One of her favorite rodeo memories was participating in the locals Relay Race. A loose cinch resulted in a fall in the midst of the race. The saving grace was Whiskey standing over her to ensure no other horse got close enough to step on her!
Caitlin plans to attend Grand Canyon University (GCU) and pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). She is excited to be accepted into the ROTC program and will serve both in school, then for 6 years after graduation. She has hopes of continuing her college education and love of travel by doing at least one year studying abroad with GCU.
Congrats Caitlin and best wishes on your bright future!