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SALTILLO, Miss. – Members of the Saltillo High School FFA chapter not only learned first-hand about agricultural livelihoods, but also earned $500 for their FFA program by participating in the third annual FFA Chapter Challenge.

“We were excited about Chapter Challenge this year because our chapter happens to be very involved in the local farming community,” said Laurie Baggett, Saltillo High School FFA chapter advisor. “As a chapter, we strive to nurture relationships with local farm families and this was an opportunity to continue doing that.”

New this year, Chapter Challenge offered FFA members in 15 states two ways to participate. Chapters could compete in the Voting Challenge or the Chapter Advocacy Portfolio Challenge. In the Voting Challenge, members met with local farmers to build relationships and learn about their livelihood. Those farmers then voted for their favorite FFA chapter. The Chapter Advocacy Portfolio Challenge encouraged chapters to meet with agriculturalists and community members to broaden their understanding about agriculture and then promote what they learned through social media and by creating a video. The Saltillo High School FFA chapter received $500 in credit for placing 5th in the Voting Challenge in Mississippi.

“Monsanto is proud to partner with the National FFA Foundation,” said Elizabeth Vancil, Monsanto customer advocacy outreach manager. “Together we are helping local FFA chapters advocate for agriculture and create bonds with the people who grow our food and build our communities.”

Across the country, more than 300 FFA chapters were in the running for the FFA Chapter Challenge grand prize, sponsored by the National FFA Foundation and Monsanto. The top chapter in each category received an all-expense paid trip for seven to the National FFA Convention & Expo. The top FFA chapters in each state received certificates of credit up to $2,500 which can be used with the national office for items such as new FFA blue jackets, convention fees and more.

Winning chapters in Mississippi:

– Portfolio Challenge

o First place – Attala County High School FFA

– Voting Challenge

o First place – Mantachie High School FFA

o Second place – Kossuth High School FFA

o Third place – West Lauderdale High School FFA

o Fourth place – Potts Camp High School FFA

o Fifth place – Saltillo High School FFA

o Sixth place – Byhalia High School FFA

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