Success Through Determination

Ryan GodfredsenWhile growing up on an acreage in rural Webster City, Iowa, Ryan Godfredsen learned the value of hard work and cultivated a passion for working with his hands. He is a self-proclaimed farm boy and keeps busy by helping his family with chores and working part time for a mowing and snow removal company. In addition, he does his own automotive painting and restoration.

Godfredsen is guided by the motto, "In order to succeed, you must fail," and has found its truth numerous times in his life. "Ever since I was little, I have wanted to race motocross," he said. "No one in my hometown raced and there wasn't even a track to ride nearby, but I didn't let this stop me. I worked summer after summer detasseling and bean walking to save enough money for a dirt bike. I was finally able to purchase one, and after a half hour of riding it for the first time, the engine seized up. Yet, instead of letting this crush my dreams, I did everything I could to learn about dirt bike repairs and how to rebuild an engine. After hours and hours of work, I got my bike running again and was able to follow my desire to race when I joined the Iowa State Motocross Club."

Godfredsen is pursuing a degree in agricultural systems technology because of his love for figuring out how things work and problem solving. He enjoys that it is a broad field, which will allow him to explore various careers. At Iowa State and beyond, Godfredsen is involved with numerous organizations including the Iowa State Hunting Club, National Society of Leadership and Success, and National Cued Speech Association.

Crediting his parents for helping him foster his gifts and talents, Godfredsen notes that they have taught him the value of respect and determination. He also points out that his employers have given him wonderful experiences from which to learn and grow. "From working on machinery and equipment to operating them, they have all taken the time to teach and guide me. These employers have provided me with opportunities for critical thinking and leadership and a chance to succeed."

Scholarship support has greatly helped Godfredsen while he works to achieve a degree and focus on his schoolwork and extracurricular involvement. "Being able to spend more time focusing on school helps me understand the materials covered in class to the best of my ability. The more I know, the better I can suit the needs of others when I am in the workplace. Donors have granted me this opportunity, and I am so thankful."