A primary identification tool of talented young people interested in agriculture careers is through AFA Community Partnerships. AFA Community Partners provide scholarships, intern opportunities and leader training as young people graduate from high school and enroll in collegiate agriculture-related degree programs.
A Community Partnership is the relationship between AFA and a community, the goal of which is to identify and develop outstanding young people with leader potential and a high level of interest in a career in the agriculture and food industry. Community Partners are donors and community volunteers who understand that their investment is an opportunity to provide a local student leader training and professional growth through AFA. They recognize that their investment leads to the future leadership for the industry and, directly or indirectly, the rural community.
Community Partners raises the funds necessary to support an AFA scholarship program in its area. Communities solicit the student applications, conduct interviews and select scholars. AFA matches local funds to finance the scholarships. Community Partners provide student leaders training by sponsoring their enrollment in AFA leader development programs, namely the AFA Leaders Conference. The AFA Leaders Conference is an annual four-day event for selected students.
Matching funds for community partnerships are available in eight Midwestern states: Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma. AFA looks forward to providing this opportunity to more communities as matching resources become available. If you or a community organization is interested in establishing a partnership, please contact AFA.