Industry FAQ

Where do we stay, and how do we book a hotel room?

There are two hotels you can stay at for AFA Leaders Conference: Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center for $181/night or The Westin Kansas City at Crown City for $181/night. The last day to book through our group rate is October 19, 2023. If you are needing to come in prior to Wednesday, November 8, please contact, so we can ensure you are given our group rate. The room block rate will not be available after October 19, or when the room block fills. Additional information on Leaders Conference travel can be found here.

What is parking like?

Self-parking is $25/night and Valet is $35/night. Both hotels have added electric car charging stations at the Sheraton and Westin hotels. Additional information on Leaders Conference travel can be found here.

I am flying in. Do you have a Southwest Airlines discount again this year?

We sure do! Visit Southwest’s booking site and enter AFA’s ID 99317562 along with your own Rapid Rewards account number and password. Submit and proceed to book your flight. The discount will be pre-loaded when booked through this site for travel between Nov. 6-17. Additional information on Leaders Conference travel can be found here.

What do I wear? Anything else I should bring?

On Thursday, we ask our guests to wear business casual or company logo apparel. On Friday, we ask our guests to wear business professional or company logo apparel. Don’t forget your business cards!

How are students selected to attend?

Approximately 150 students are pre-identified by leader and academic scholarship programs offered by AFA. Remaining attendees are selected through an application process for corporate or college/university sponsorship through AFA and its partners. The selection process is all structured AFA’s six competencies. Of note, each student applies for each experience they attend.

What is AFA Leaders Conference?

AFA Leaders Conference is a four-day professional development event for delegates to gather from 42 states and 110 colleges and universities in order to make connections with fellow students, hear from the folks guiding the agriculture industry today, grow their network, learn from experts in the field, explore careers and discuss our constantly evolving industry. Our partners join us for the first two days of the event to share perspectives, build bridges and deepen the delegates’ experience while in Kansas City, Missouri. We’re so grateful you’re joining us, representing your company and engaging with our students!

Who are your AFA Board of Directors?

Board members are recognized leaders from food and agricultural corporations, educational institutions, associations, trade media and production agriculture. The AFA Board of Directors meets three times annually to provide strategic and fiduciary oversight for the organization. We are so grateful for their time and effort in furthering our mission and vision! Meet them here.

I see there are four tracks - what does that mean?

We separate our delegates into four tracks — freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors. You will see that students can be identified by different lanyard colors for each track.

In Track 1, freshmen apply core competencies crucial for college and career success through a lens of curiosity and self-awareness. They’ll receive training in time management and goal setting, while exploring career paths in the agriculture and food industry.

In Track 2, sophomores and juniors explore the interpersonal application of the competencies in teams and organizations. They’ll analyze the intersection of communication, cultural competence, relationship development and team leadership, as well as communicating personal values and strengths.

Track 3 prepares juniors and seniors to live and work in a global market by practicing group collaboration and discussing global leadership and systems. They’ll work on personal financial management, cultural understanding and their transition to the workplace.

Track 4 is a unique capstone experience that builds upon previous tracks of the AFA program. It’s a highly interactive, participant-directed program that culminates seniors’ growth in the core competencies and helps them set a plan for early career success. Discussion groups and participant-led facilitation add value to this experience.

Learn more about their specific schedules here

Who will be there?

AFA Leaders Conference is attended by over 800 college students from across the nation. More than 300 industry leaders are involved in the conference as speakers, panelists, discussion group leaders, exhibitors or guests. 

Who partners with AFA?

We’re so grateful for our partners! You can find them here.

I would love to learn more about the organization as a whole. Where do I find more information? 

We’d direct you to our 2023 Building Bridges Magazine. Check it out here!

Do you host events other than AFA Leaders Conference?

In addition to our flagship experience, we host six AFA Leader Institutes across the country throughout the year, including AFA + NACD Sustainability Institute, AFA Technology Institute, AFA Animal Institute, AFA Food Institute, AFA Crop Science Institute and AFA Policy Institute. You can learn more about each Institute here. If you’re interested in getting engaged in any of these programs, please reach out to

I'm an AFA alum and I want to get more involved. How do I do that?

We’d love to engage with you through our alumni-specific events, including AllianceX and Destination Alliance. We also would appreciate your financial support and volunteered time at our events.

Make sure to join our LinkedIn group, Alliance Connection, to stay up-to-date on all things AFA alumni and to connect with fellow alumni peers.

Please reach out to for further information.