AFA communities are defined by the geographic scope where funds are raised and applications are accepted, which may be a single rural town, a county, a business service area, or multiple rural communities.
AFA community partnerships are supported in eight states including Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma and are year-to-year partnerships. Each year the community signs a partnership agreement with AFA to indicate intent to provide a scholarship.
AFA Scholarship Qualifications
- Be a graduating senior from a high school in the designated community
- Be enrolled (or enrolling) in an accredited college of agriculture seeking a bachelor of science degree in agriculture or an agriculture-related major
AFA is interested in the student’s overall profile indicating he/she will succeed in a college environment and will provide strong leadership in their future career. Candidates need not be ranked the highest in their high school class or be an elected leader.
AFA’s Matching Funds
The AFA Community Partnership provides an academic scholarship for tuition and fees in the amount of $3,200 and sponsorship to attend the AFA Leaders Conference the fall of the freshman year of college. Local partners contribute $1,600 while AFA matches local dollars to establish a scholarship (paid to the academic institution). Additionally, a portion of the community-raised dollars provides for that individual's participation in the AFA Leaders Conference ($1,000 registration cost). The local partners contribute $500 toward registration to the AFA Leaders Conference and AFA provides matching dollars. In total, the community raises $2,500 per award, which also allows for program administration and reimbursable marketing funds.
AFA Scholarship Requirements
Selected scholars must commit to attend the AFA Leaders Conference in the fall semester of the awarded scholarship year and remain in good standing with the institution to receive the academic scholarship.
The Selection Criterion
Selection is based on the following:
- Essay – 300-500 words describing how the student perceives the future of agriculture and why he or she is seeking to be a part of the industry
- Interview – Based on the student’s application, interests and essay
- Community Service – Involvement in activities outside the student’s education-related activities
- Student Group Activities – Involvement within the student’s education-related activities
- General Factors – Includes work experience, financial need, reference letters and other factors identified by the community committee
- Scholarship – AFA recommends using a high school GPA of 3.0/4.0
The Promotion Committee
The promotion committee consists of local volunteers who are responsible for creating awareness of the AFA scholarship program. The committee has $200 per scholarship to support community awareness. AFA provides support materials and guidelines for the committee to use for this purpose.