The Kansas Beef Council and the Kansas FFA Foundation have partnered to recognize six agriculture education instructors and FFA advisors with Masters of Beef Advocacy grants.
Angelle Higbie, West Franklin; Les McNally, Hugoton; Drew Obermeyer, Rural Vista-Hope; Ashley Vann, Solomon; John Bergin, Goessel; and Kendra Linnebur, Fredonia; were selected based on their desire to complete the Masters of Beef Advocacy program and vision to create a school/community presentation, inclusion in an online environment, or participation in a media interview within their respective Kansas FFA districts.
This year's grant recipient class will complete online learning modules focusing on Modern Beef Production, Animal Care, Beef Safety, Beef Nutrition, Environmental Stewardship, and the Beef Checkoff.
"The Kansas Beef Council is excited to support these agriculture teachers and FFA advisors as they train the future leaders of the beef industry. Our industry is at a critical point in needing individuals who advocate for production agriculture. This partnership will help create these leaders", said Mark Harms, a cow-calf rancher and current KBC executive committee chairman from Lincolnville.
Grant recipients also are expected to incorporate information learned into their classroom teachings during the 2011-12 academic year. Angelle Higbie, West Franklin agricultural educator and FFA advisor, envisions concepts mastered to directly impact her students. "Masters of Beef Advocacy components will be incorporated into my animal science curriculum. It is essential that my students understand basic animal production, health, and welfare. I also will use information about food safety and beef demand during my unit on meats. Quality of beef for consumers and nutritional intake benefits stemming from beef consumption are valuable lessons to understand."
This is the inaugural year for the Kansas Beef Council grant program. "The Kansas Beef Council has been a loyal friend of the Kansas FFA through the years. We are focused on jointly building partnerships that offer real-life education and training opportunities for our agriculture educators. These educators are eager for knowledge, and I appreciate the council for promoting current and usable industry information through our newly born grant program," said Kerry Wefald, executive director of the Kansas FFA Foundation.