The National FFA Organization is answering the need for more highly skilled graduates to fill job openings in the field of agriculture, and nowhere is this more evident than in the organization’s growing membership.
Today, the organization announced a record-high student membership of 649,355, up from 629,367 in 2015 and an increase of 3 percent. The number of FFA chapters grew from 7,757 to 7,859. The top six student membership states are Texas, California, Georgia, Oklahoma, Ohio and Missouri. Interest in FFA and agricultural education continues to grow, as membership continues to increase.
“FFA continues to grow leaders, build communities and strengthen agriculture, and our membership growth reflects continued enthusiasm for agriculture,” National FFA Organization CEO Mark Poeschl said. “Through agricultural education, FFA is preparing our members for careers in agriculture and is working to ensure the security of our country’s food, fiber and natural resources systems for years to come. Through real-world experiences, agriculture educators are helping students develop the technical knowledge, skills and problem-solving capabilities to be the industry’s leaders of tomorrow.”
Student membership was not the organization’s only growth opportunity in 2016. National FFA Alumni membership exploded with 225,891 members, growing from 62,705 in 2015. This year, graduating high school seniors automatically received alumni membership, which the growth numbers reflect. FFA Alumni play an important role in keeping agricultural education and FFA programs in local schools by providing both volunteers and financial support to local teachers.
The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 649,355 student members who belong to one of 7,859 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.