The award is given to students “making significant positive changes” within their institutions or communities.
Pittman, who is studying math and science for secondary education, was raised in Glen, Mont. and worked with 4-H from a young age as a member of the Saddle Bums and Glen Pioneers clubs.
While a member of the Glen Pioneers, she was able to kick start her “Go Green” campaign which focuses on educating people about how to be more environmentally conscious. She recently presented techniques on conserving water and reducing plastic waste at the Reichle Elementary School in her hometown.
Pittman’s ultimate goal is to become a teacher in rural Alaska, and growing up in Glen, she knows the difficulties small communities can face when attempting to recycle.
The lack of infrastructure can make the prospect of large-scale recycling a difficulty in a rural state like Montana; for example, right now the people of Glen have no convenient way to recycle plastic in their community.
This is why Pittman plans to organize a space where the community can easily drop off their plastic waste before it’s taken to Butte for processing.
Along with her conservation efforts, Pittman was also active in athletics while in high school, but beyond participating in softball, she was also instrumental in establishing the program at Beaverhead County High School.
She sold thousands of dollars’ worth of cookie dough to help get the program started during its initial fundraising campaign. Pittman continues to hold open gyms where kids can try out the sport in a supportive environment.
Eventually, Pittman would like to start a softball club at the University of Montana Western, while she works towards her secondary education degree.
“I knew I wanted to teach, and Montana Western is one of the best schools for learning how to be a successful educator,” she said.