Agriculture plays a key role in our daily lives and in a variety of ways. Next week, more than half a million FFA members will celebrate the role agriculture plays in our lives while sharing their message of agriculture and agricultural education throughout the country.
During National FFA Week, a host of activities are planned to raise awareness about the role the National FFA Organization plays in the development of agriculture’s future leaders and the importance of agricultural education.
FFA Week always runs Saturday to Saturday and encompasses Feb. 22, George Washington’s birthday. This year, the week kicks off on Feb. 20 and culminates on Feb. 27.
The weeklong tradition, which began in 1948, was designated by the National FFA Board of Directors in recognition of Washington’s legacy as an agriculturalist and farmer. FFA was founded by a group of young farmers back in 1928. Its mission is to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding a growing population. Founding members of the organization taught generations that agriculture is more than planting and harvesting — it involves science, business and more.
Today, FFA continues to help the next generation rise up to meet new agricultural challenges by helping members develop their own unique talents and explore their interests in a broad range of career pathways. Members progress to enjoy careers as biologists, chemists, veterinarians, engineers and entrepreneurs.
FFA chapters use this week to help share the message of agriculture with their fellow students as well as with their community. It’s an opportunity to give back to their community through service projects and is also a perfect time for members to recruit students to become FFA members.
For example, the Allentown FFA chapter in New Jersey travels to the nearby community of Tennent, N.J., to place a wreath on the grave of Leslie Applegate, the first national FFA president (1928-29).
During this week, the six national officers will visit chapters across the country. Western Region Vice President Sarah Draper will visit Maine; Sydney Snyder, eastern region vice president, will visit Montana; Abrah Meyer, central region vice president, will visit Kentucky; Abbey Gretsch, southern region vice president, will visit Rhode Island; Nick Baker, secretary, will visit Louisiana; and National FFA President Taylor McNeel will visit Wisconsin.
FFA Week is also a time for alumni and sponsors to advocate for agricultural education and FFA. On Tuesday, Feb. 23, the National FFA Foundation will celebrate “Give FFA Day,” a daylong campaign that will encourage the public to support the various needs impacting FFA members. Every gift will count toward achieving the FFA mission. Visit FFA.org/giveFFAday to donate.
Sponsored by Tractor Supply Company, National FFA Week will be all over social media. Follow the #FFAweek hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and don’t miss @NationalFFA Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat posts, including posts from the National FFA Officer Team while on the road.
The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 629,367 student members who belong to one of 7,757 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.