Oregon Agriculture in the Classroom Foundation launches statewide essay contest about agriculture

February 9, 2006

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Oregon Agriculture in the Classroom Foundation has launched its second annual statewide essay contest about agriculture. Interested Oregon high school students may enter the competition, which is judged on how persuasively their writing communicates the importance of agriculture in our daily lives.

The foundation is a non-profit organization headquartered at Oregon State University. The group's 2006 essay contest is sponsored by the Capital Press, Oregon Farm Bureau, Agri-Business Council of Oregon and Dairy Farmers of Oregon.

For the list of essay topics and contest rules visit the foundation's website, http://AITC.oregonstate.edu. Mail entries, postmarked by March 1, to Tami Kerr; Oregon State University; 105 Ballard Extension Hall; Corvallis, OR 97331.

"The goals of this statewide writing contest are to create a positive learning experience by encouraging students to read more, be creative, and expand their vocabularies; and to further general understanding of agriculture in our lives," said Kerr, Agriculture in the Classroom program director.

Participation certificates will be awarded to all students who submit essays. Judges will select the top three entries in four divisions (grades 9, 10, 11 and 12).

Students with winning essays will receive cash awards ranging from $50 to $100 as well as Dairy Farmers of Oregon "Got Milk" sweatshirts. In addition, winning essays will be published in the Capital Press Agriculture Weekly Newspaper in celebration of National Agriculture Week, March 19-25.

Teachers of the student winners will receive plaques to display in their schools.

"Food and fiber, produced by today's farmers, are essential to everyday life," Kerr noted. "It is important that the public understand the industry and how relevant it is to their lives. More than 15 percent of the U.S. population is employed in farm or farm-related jobs."

Author: Bob Rost
Source: Tami Kerr