The National FFA Organization announced a record high student membership of 760,113 members in the United States. That is up from last year when FFA membership in the United States was 700,170. There are FFA members in all 50 states, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. There are FFA chapters in 24 of the largest 25 cities in the United States. In addition there are more than 8 million FFA alumni and supporters in the United States!

"The relevance of agriculture and the security of our country's food, fiber and natural resources systems has never been more important," said National FFA CEO Mark Poeschl. "Our FFA members are the future generation of leaders who will be making an impact in the industry. As we continue to bring agricultural education and FFA to more students, we see the enthusiasm of this generation reflected in the growth of our organization."

When I was a member of the organization it was called Future Farmers of America. The name was changed to the FFA because it is now much more than Future Farmers. Today it prepares members for leadership and careers in agriculture and other fields as well. Back when I was a first year member in 1969 only boys could join. However, that was when the by-laws were changed and girls could join too. Today 44 percent of the FFA membership is female.

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