THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
From Our Readers
Issue Date: February 22, 2017
To The Editor:
This week, Feb 18-25, is celebrated as National FFA Week across America. The roots of the FFA Organization are in high school training programs for farm boys destined to return to the farm. Programs were encouraged by the federal Smith-Hughes Act, which celebrates its 100th anniversary this month. Forward-looking agricultural leaders of the day soon recognized that the technical training in farming practices would be enhanced by leadership training and experiences. To that end, in 1928, the Future Farmers of America was organized.
Fast forward to 2017. A name change to The FFA Organization reflects the broad scope of agriculture-related careers. Membership was extended to girls and today the number of girls participating in FFA equals or exceeds that of boys. The current focus on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) represents the future of agriculture. Agriculture instructors teach STEM classroom lessons, FFA members incorporate STEM principles in their projects, and alumni of FFA build businesses based on their experience with STEM in FFA.
FFA has become the largest and among the most effective youth development programs in the country. The statement of mission of the FFA says it all: FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.
Our area is blessed with vibrant agriculture education and FFA programs in the Coleman, Gillett, Lena, Oconto Falls, Pulaski, and Suring school districts. These programs are led by creative, energetic, and dedicated professional agricultural educators/FFA advisors and are supported by equally committed community members through FFA Alumni chapters and by local businesses. The record of accomplishments of graduates of FFA in our schools is amazing and runs the gamut from local business employees and owners, and civic leaders to those who have gone on to careers in education, medicine, biomedical research, government service and more.
Congratulations to FFA members and advisors everywhere. And thank you to the adult supporters in FFA Alumni, businesses, and school boards and administrators as we celebrate National FFA Week 2017.