BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (Feb. 4, 2013) – As an extension of its sponsorship with the National FFA Foundation, Tractor Supply Company has recently announced a new scholarship program to assist FFA members in their pursuit of a college degree.
The Growing Scholars program will be supported nationally by each of the more than 1,150 Tractor Supply stores Feb. 15-24, which includes National FFA Week. Tractor Supply customers can donate $1 at store registers during the checkout process to support local FFA chapters and their members. Ninety percent of funds raised through Tractor Supply’s Growing Scholars program will be utilized to fund scholarships for FFA members. The remaining 10 percent of donations will benefit state FFA organizations.
“This program will provide critical funding to FFA members who intend to pursue a college degree and local FFA chapters that enrich the lives of young members by teaching life skills, citizenship and leadership qualities,” said Tractor Supply President and CEO Greg Sandfort. “For us, this is an outstanding way to support our current and future customers and future team members and a way to give back to the 1,100-plus unique communities we serve.”
To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be current FFA members and either high school seniors or a freshman, sophomore or junior college student seeking a two- or four-year degree or other specialized training program. Major areas of study will also be considered when determining scholarship recipients.
“We are extremely grateful to Tractor Supply and its customers for supporting FFA, student and alumni members and agriculture education in general,” said National FFA Foundation Executive Director Robert K. Cooper.
In addition to the Growing Scholars program, Tractor Supply and the National FFA Foundation have many other joint initiatives, including the FFA horse evaluation career development event, National FFA Week and the annual National Association of Agricultural Educators Conference. At an individual store level, Tractor Supply continually hosts fund-raising events and works closely with local FFA chapters and high school agriculture advisors to provide resources and leverage synergies.
“Local high school agricultural advisors and FFA chapters feel at home in their local Tractor Supply stores,” said John Wendler, senior vice president of marketing at Tractor Supply. “These groups often host fund-raising events at our stores to raise money for community projects, like building a school greenhouse, a new bridge in a public park or an animal care lab. Our stores also work with local FFA members to support specific programs and proficiencies by providing demonstrations from knowledgeable Tractor Supply employees and our vendor partners, which brings significant value to both organizations.”
Tractor Supply has been a sponsor of the National FFA Foundation for 27 years. The National FFA Foundation is the fundraising arm of the National FFA Organization, which provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 557,318 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,498 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.