Editor’s Note: The International Collegiate Agricultural Leadership (I-CAL) program travels overseas to learn about global agriculture and international marketing. The group of 12 Collegiate FFA members departed the U.S. on May 20 for a 10-day tour of Japan where they engaged U.S. Embassy officials and government leaders; toured feed mills, animal markets, small farms and livestock operations; and toured food processing plants, among other activities. ICAL 2014 is made possible through support from The Grains Foundation.
Day 1 – We’re in Japan!
The ICAL 2014 group prior to departure.
Our flight went really well. It was about 12-hours and during the flight we flew over the Alaskan Islands, which was pretty cool! We were on one of United Airlines’ new planes called the Dreamliner and it was phenomenal. Even the food was tasty!
We met Tommy Hamamoto, Director of the US Grains Council in Japan, at the airport and drove about 1-hr to Tokyo from Narita. It was rainy and cloudy, which seems to be a common trend here in Japan.
We drove past Disneyland, Tokyo and over a couple of waterways that led to the Pacific Ocean. It’s strange to think that we’re now on the opposite side of the ocean from the U.S. Continue reading
Celine Patrick and Ashlee Tarro of the Sumner FFA Chapter in Washington were honored Tuesday at the White House.
Two FFA members who solved a plant infestation problem in their high school greenhouse were honored Tuesday at a White House event for students who excel in science.
Celine Patrick, 15, of Lake Tapps, Wash., and Ashlee Tarro, 15, of Auburn, Wash., are members of the Sumner High School FFA chapter in Sumner, Wash. Both were invited to the 2014 White House Science Fair that celebrates the accomplishments of student winners of a broad range of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions throughout the U.S.
This year’s event includes a specific focus on girls and women who have excelled in STEM and inspired the next generation with their work. Continue reading
Happy National Ag Day!
Today, March 25, we’re celebrating along with the Agriculture Council of America a day geared to recognize the abundance provided by agriculture. National Ag Day is all about celebrating and recognizing the contributions agriculture makes to our everyday lives.
Why celebrate and recognize? Well, the organizers explain that pretty well:
Agriculture provides almost everything we eat, use and wear on a daily basis. But too few people truly understand this contribution. This is particularly the case in our schools, where students may only be exposed to agriculture if they enroll in related vocational training.
By building awareness, the Agriculture Council of America is encouraging young people to consider career opportunities in agriculture.
Obviously, these goals fit in perfectly with the mission of FFA to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.
In the spirit of National Ag Day, we developed a list of agriculture facts that you may not know. Check them out:
Dr. Norman Borlaug is a popular name this week. But who exactly is Dr. Borlaug?
Before we get too deep into his biography and impact, just consider this: Dr. Norman E. Borlaug is one of only three Americans ever to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Only Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Elie Wiesel join Dr. Borlaug on that prestigious list.
Dr. Borlaug — he passed away in 2009 — is at the forefront of conversation this week for a few reasons.
As we celebrate both National Ag Day and the Norman Borlaug Centennial, The World Food Prize has a question for people everywhere: How will you help feed the world?
It’s a critical question for people of all ages as we confront what World Food Prize President Amb. Kenneth M. Quinn calls “the single greatest challenge in human history: whether we can sustainably feed the 9 billion people who will be on our planet in the year 2050.”
That’s quite the task, but we know FFA members and supporters have answers to this question.
Here’s a cool opportunity for FFA members from the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance.
Starting Feb. 18, FFA members are encouraged to draft and post a brief social media friendly “essay” (no more than 400 words) that starts with the writing prompt, “I am the future…” Continue reading
2014 CTE Month
Happy 2014 CTE Month!
Spearheaded by the Association for Career & Technical Education, 2014 CTE Month encourages everyone to explore and learn the amazing accomplishments, achievements and contributions of those in career and technical education. Of course FFA — with our legions of members, former members, instructors and advisors involved in agricultural education — is large part of CTE in the U.S.
CTE celebrates cutting-edge, rigorous and relevant education — agricultural education is just one example — that is designed to prepare youth and adults for high-wage, high-skill and high-demand careers. Naturally, we’re proud to be considered one of ACTE’s Career and Technical Student Organizations.
2014 CTE Month is celebrating “CTE Superheroes” and looking to spread stories about those who made a difference in the area. Find more info about that here.
Looking for an easier way to understand and explain what CTE is? You’re in luck, thanks to the this great ACTE infographic:
Continuing a week full of impressive meetings and amazing experiences, the 2013-14 National FFA Officer Team met another member of President Barack Obama’s cabinet this week: Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.
The meeting, at the USDA Whitten Building in Washington, D.C., followed time that the team spent with Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Vilsack asked the national officers to “keep farming on the front burner” during the visit, according to the official USDA Blog:
“We are excited by the challenges you presented to us,” said FFA National Secretary Mitch Baker at the conclusion of a half-hour meeting of National FFA officers with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack at the USDA Whitten Building earlier this week. Continue reading
By Caroline Weihl, National FA Convention & Expo Newsroom Reporter
“Be the spark” were the words left lingering in the minds of the audience members. This challenge was placed upon them by a fellow FFA alumna and agriculture advocate. It is up to them to share their stories, just as she shared hers.
American farmer Katie Pratt dared the FFA members at the third general session of the 86th National FFA Convention & Expo to be on the cutting edge of food and agriculture dialogues because of their advantage in education and experience.
“I think FFA members have a real unique opportunity to share what they learn in the classroom setting with their community,” Pratt said. “FFA members are going to be on the forefront of communicating with their peers about what agriculture is.” Continue reading
Network with industry leaders and young professionals with new FFALink
By Hannah Kleckner, newsroom and media relations intern
LOUISVILLE – As a young professional and FFA member, a career within the agriculture industry may be in your not-so-distant future. It’s no secret, though, that landing an actual job isn’t always an easy process. But fear not; if a “connection to success” is what you’re looking for, FFA Link is here to help.
FFA Link is a newly established exclusive group of college students and young professionals ready to connect their passion for agriculture with real-world career skills.