The FFA Mission
The Tennessee FFA Association is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of young people by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.
The Tennessee FFA Association consists of more than 13,000 FFA members from nearly 300 chapters. FFA is a diverse organization, operating in rural, urban and suburban schools. Students ages 12-21 enrolled in agriscience education programs are eligible for membership.
Science, Business and Technology
The organization changed its name in 1988 from Future Farmers of America to the National FFA Organization to reflect its evolution in response to expanded agricultural opportunities encompassing science, business and technology in addition to production farming. FFA members, who may enter the workforce directly or pursue higher degrees from technical schools or other universities, are preparing for careers in agricultural marketing, processing, communications, education, horticulture, production, natural resources, forestry, agribusiness and other diverse agricultural fields.
The FFA was organized nationally in 1928 in Kansas City, Mo. In 1950, Congress granted the FFA a federal charter, making it an integral, intra-curricular part of public agricultural instruction under the National Vocational Education Acts.
The FFA operates on local, state and national levels. Student members belong to chapters organized at the local level. Agriscience education instructors serve as chapter advisors. Tennessee chapters are organized under the state association headed by an advisor and youth consultant. The state association conducts programs and hosts annual conventions run by the state officer team. The Tennessee FFA Association charters new chapters, provides direction, programmatic materials and support, and hosts the State FFA Convention which draws approximately 3,000 attendees each spring.
The agriscience education program provides a well-rounded, practical approach to learning through three components: 1) classroom education in agricultural and natural resources topics, such as plant and animal sciences, horticulture, forestry, agrimarketing, etc.; 2) hands-on supervised agricultural career experiences such as starting a business or working for an established company; and 3) FFA, which provides leadership opportunities and develops and evaluates students’ agricultural skills.
Programs and Activities
FFA’s local, state and national programs and activities help members develop public speaking skills, conduct and participate in meetings, manage financial matters, strengthen problem-solving abilities and assume civic responsibility. Degrees earned at local, state and national levels recognize members’ increasing accomplishments. Competitive events and award programs in areas such as public speaking, commodity marketing and agriscience recognize students’ achievements, encourage them to excel beyond the classroom and develop career skills. Community service programs help students contribute to society.