Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

NMSU FFA promotes leadership, reach, and members receive national awards

By Tiffany Acosta, Public Information Officer, NMSU News Center

New Mexico State University’s Collegiate National FFA Organization offers students the opportunity to continue their leadership opportunities and make a difference in their communities.

“At the college level, the club is not just for students with an agricultural background or degree, but this organization is for anyone looking to gain leadership experience and make a positive impact on communities in an agricultural context,” said Don Edgar, Agricultural and Extension Education Professor and NMSU Collegiate FFA Advisor.

“Developing leadership skills in our students is a fundamental part of their education at the College of ACES,” said Rolando Flores Galarza, dean of the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES). “Our students are the future leaders of the nation and several other countries in the world, as our renowned ACES alumni have demonstrated. We are very proud of our FFA team and the lecturers who advise and supervise them. “

Six NMSU students and a consultant attended the FFA National Convention and Expo in Indianapolis, Indiana, in October. Members competed at the National Alpha Tau Alpha Conclave, where they participated in quiz bowls, parliamentary processes, debates, and competitions for the Excellence Program.

Seven NMSU students were among 16 New Mexico students who received their American FFA degrees at the National Convention. Madeleine Gardner, Anne Hodnett, Brandon Larranaga, Mackenzie Lightfoot, Tianna Peterson, Trevor Rawdon and Taylor Scott received the highest achievable degree in FFA. The American FFA degree illustrates the commitment of an FFA member to his chapter and his state FFA association. Less than 1 percent of FFA members achieve the award.

To qualify for an American FFA degree, FFA members must have earned and productively invested $ 10,000 through a supervised agricultural experience program, owning their own business or holding a professional position as an employee. Recipients must also do 50 hours of community service and demonstrate outstanding leadership and civic engagement through completing FFA and community activities. Members of the NMSU Collegiate FFA take part in events such as Clean-Up Las Cruces, the Big Event and the AG Day.

While many NMSU Collegiate FFA members have attended high school and middle school first, this is not a requirement. In New Mexico, FFA has nearly 3,000 members in 83 high schools and middle schools.

“From farming advocacy to leadership development, the New Mexico FFA is committed to helping members find their passion and build their futures,” said Gary Aycock, NMSU state agricultural education regulator and state FFA consultant. “New Mexico FFA continues to help the next generation overcome these challenges by helping its members develop their own unique talents and explore interests across a wide range of farming career paths.

Several high school and middle school members also attended the national convention and won national awards. A list of the winners can be found at www.nmffa.org/uploads/4/1/0/7/41075673/new_mexico_ffa_national_results.pdf.

Visit https://axed.nmsu.edu/collegiateffa.html.

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