Oklahoma FFA partners with Devon Energy to further agriscience education
Kendra Burch, Shawnee FFA Chapter, placed third in the Plant Systems Division 2 at the 2014 National FFA Agriscience Fair.
OKLAHOMA CITY—Oklahoma agricultural education students will have the opportunity to develop agriscience projects related to the oil, gas and agriculture industries thanks to a new Devon Energy Agriscience Initiative.
Through the partnership, the Oklahoma FFA Foundation and Association will offer opportunities and incentives for agriculture education students to research, develop, conduct and evaluate Agriscience Fair projects.
Student projects may address issues such as wildlife conservation, protecting natural habitats, noise reduction, water management and soil science that are relevant to the agriculture and oil and gas industries.
The initiative includes financial incentives for participants and teachers who participate in the Agriscience Fair at the OSU State Agriscience Interscholastic competition in April 2015. Students with winning projects will receive a $1,000 scholarship. FFA chapters, agriculture education teachers and high school science teachers who collaborate with Agriscience Fair participants also can receive stipends.
State FFA President Garrett Reed, of the Locust Grove FFA chapter, is thrilled with the new partnership and what it will mean to the FFA and its members.
"This new partnership with Devon Energy will be significant in preparing agricultural education students and FFA members to explore and seek opportunities in the workforce," Reed said. "We are ready to meet Devon's challenge."
Agriscience Fair division winners will receive a financial award and recognition at the State FFA Convention. They also will present their projects to Devon officials during a reception at the company's corporate headquarters in Oklahoma City.
"Conservation and oil and gas development go hand in hand," said Alan Marcum, Devon Energy executive vice president. "We look forward to seeing the innovative ideas students come up with to help the oil and gas industry continue its commitment to environmental stewardship and being a good neighbor."
The Devon Agriscience Initiative also features regional Agriscience Summer Academies for agriculture education teachers on proper research techniques and assisting students in selecting Agriscience Fair projects. The Academies will be led by the Noble Foundation, which also supports the initiative.
"We are committed to providing students with interesting and innovative opportunities to learn more about science, technology, engineering and math," Marcum said. "We are pleased to partner with the Oklahoma FFA to encourage students' interest in academic work that could lead to energy-related careers."
Devon Executive Vice President Alan Marcum presents Oklahoma FFA Officers Joshua Haven and Desiree Masterson with a check for $28,000 as a Title Sponsor of the 2014 State FFA Convention. Click for larger image.
FFA is an integral part of the Agricultural Education Division in Oklahoma's CareerTech system. With 25,552 members in 355 high schools statewide, the Oklahoma FFA Association is the fifth-largest state FFA association. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. To learn more about the Oklahoma FFA, visit http://okffa.org or follow @ffaok on Twitter.
For more information contact Whitney Danker, 405.590.5917