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NRCS Recruits Students at Texas FFA Convention in Corpus

Story by Melissa Blair

A record attendance of 12,000 FFA students, teachers, parents, and visitors descended on the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi on July 13-15. USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) staff visited with a large portion of the attendees and provided information about what we do as an agency and opportunities to volunteer, intern, and work for the agency.

Jim Hogg County District Conservationist, Erasmo Montemayor; Zone 3 Public Affairs Specialist, Melissa Blair; second year intern, Kelsey Johnson; and Earth Team volunteer, Jessica Burns, visited with students about their work with NRCS and also engaged students and teachers in a challenging game of Conservation Jeopardy.

"It was an excellent opportunity to get NRCS' name out in front of these future volunteers, interns, and employees," said Burns, who was a FFA member during her high school years. "I hate to say that many of the folks we visited with were not aware of NRCS or the opportunities to volunteer or intern with us. This is a prime example of why we need to continue our outreach to these students and teachers, so they think of us when it comes to making career choices."

Teachers were provided information about Earth Team volunteer positions for students 14 and older and also told about the Federal Women's Program that is recruiting high school females 16 and older to work during summer 2011.

"I think it was important for the NRCS to be there to let students and teachers know about the great opportunities with NRCS," said Johnson. "The intern program has been beneficial to me, in helping me explore my career options and gain good job experience."

NRCS Earth Team volunteer, Jessica Burns, and Kelsey Johnson, play a game of Conservation Jeopardy with FFA students at the NRCS booth during the Texas FFA Convention in Corpus Christi.

NRCS intern, Kelsey Johnson, visits with FFA students about the opportunities to participate in the Federal Women's Program high school internship program.

NRCS Earth Team volunteer, Jessica Burns, and Kelsey Johnson, play a game of Conservation Jeopardy with FFA students at the NRCS booth during the Texas FFA Convention in Corpus Christi.

NRCS intern, Kelsey Johnson, visits with FFA students about the opportunities to participate in the Federal Women's Program high school internship program.