Google.org supports the Missouri FFA Foundation
The Missouri FFA Foundation and Google.org partner to improve agriculture education classrooms
In 2022, the Missouri FFA Foundation launched the Learning by Doing Classroom Grants’ program to assist agriculture education teachers across the state in improving the curriculum, equipment, facilities, and supplies needed to support instruction in production agriculture, agri-business, or related areas. The response to the program was enthusiastic with almost twice the number of applications as funding available. “We saw a clearly demonstrated need to not only continue but broaden the program if the challenge of adequate funding could be resolved,” said Heather Dimitt-Fletcher, Executive Director.
Late last fall, the Missouri FFA Foundation received a call from Dan Harbeke, Head of Public Policy and External Affairs with Google. His company was looking for an avenue to provide resources to youth throughout Missouri, in a way that also fit with the company’s mission. He saw potential in the foundation’s Learning by Doing Classroom Grants’ program but wanted to learn more about it. During this conversation, Dimitt-Fletcher shared multiple stories with Harbeke where the classroom grants could support technology in agriculture education classes, including an ultrasound machine for monitoring pregnancies in livestock, energy efficient water and heat controls for green houses, and 3-D printers for making hard to find/fit parts in ag mechanics classes. After their conversation, Harbeke was pleased to share that Google.org would be making a $50,000 donation to the Missouri FFA Foundation in support of the Learning by Doing Classroom grants program.
The Missouri FFA Foundation plans to distribute the $50,000 from Google.org over the course of four years to support the purchase of new or update of existing technology in agriculture education classrooms. It’s anticipated 40 classroom grants will be possible due to the generosity of Google.org.