FFA Chapters to Compete

article image
courtesy National FFA Organization
members of the Middleton FFA Chapter in Florida work on greenhouse plants.

Indianapolis – FFA chapters in seven states recently
began efforts to create new and stronger connections with their local farmers
and earn their share of more than $225,000 in incentives.

The 2011 FFA
Chapter Challenge encourages members of FFA chapters in Iowa,
Illinois, Indiana,
Minnesota, Missouri,
Georgia and Alabama to reach out to
their community’s farmers, learn about their operations, engage them and bond
them with FFA. Confirmation of each participating chapter’s connection with
local farmers must be registered by farmers online at the FFA Chapter Challenge website or by calling the National FFA Organization, toll-free, at 800-293-2387.

The deadline for
farmers to confirm connections is May 1. FFA chapter winners will be announced
by May 15.

The top 125 FFA
chapters that make the most connections with farmers will receive a $1,500
certificate of credit from the National FFA Organization. Chapters can use the
credit throughout the year to buy FFA member jackets, merchandise, awards,
banquet supplies and more. Chapters can also use the funds to pay member costs
associated with attending the organization’s largest annual events, the
Washington Leadership Conference and national FFA convention.

“This is a
wonderful opportunity for students to reach out to people in their community
who make their living in agriculture and forge strong, meaningful
relationships,” says Rob Cooper, executive director of the National FFA
Foundation. The foundation secures funding through corporate sponsorships and
private contributions for FFA and agriculture education in general.

Only FFA
chapters in Iowa, Illinois,
Indiana, Minnesota,
Missouri, Georgia
and Alabama
are eligible to participate. More than 1,700 FFA chapters and their combined
117,824 FFA members can take part in the FFA Chapter Challenge.

The chapter that
makes the most connections among the top 125 chapters that participate in the
2011 FFA Chapter Challenge will be awarded a grand prize – an all-expenses-paid
trip for six FFA members and one adult advisor to October’s National FFA
Convention in Indianapolis.
The grand prize has an actual retail value of $6,500.

For more about
the 2011 FFA Chapter Challenge, a special project of the National FFA
Foundation, visit the challenge’s website. 

Formerly known
as Future Farmers of America, the National FFA Organization provides agricultural
education to more than 523,000 student members in grades seven through 12 who
belong to one of 7,487 local FFA chapters throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The organization operates under a federal
charter granted by the 81st U.S. Congress and it is an integral part of public
instruction in agriculture. For more, visit the FFA’s main website.

The FFA mission is 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. The U.S. Department of
Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to
state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online,
on Facebook,
on Twitter and at the
website for FFA Nation.

The National FFA
Foundation builds partnerships with industry, education, government, other
foundations and individuals to secure financial resources that fund FFA
activities, recognize member achievements, develop student leaders and support
the future of agriculture education. Governed by a 19-member board of trustees
comprised of educators, business leaders, individual donors and FFA alumni, the
foundation is a separately-registered nonprofit organization. Nearly 82 percent
of all funds received by the foundation support FFA and agricultural education
opportunities. For more, visit the National FFA Foundation website.