Welcome Teachers, Parents, & Students!
This site is a product of a USDA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Project.
Our goal for this project is to engage teachers, young farmers, activists, and students in the larger network of beginning farmers, support students in gaining hands-on experiences, and encourage positive attitudes towards farming as a career option.
As part of school-based agricultural science education, students are encouraged to develop their own supervised agricultural experience (SAE) or agricultural project. These projects engage students in exploring agricultural career fields, performing research and experiments, developing a business and demonstrating earnings, or working in an agricultural career field.
A network of dedicated agricultural science educators, service organizations, and community groups has gathered to help develop and support youth interest in farming and farm career exploration. Our goal is to cultivate networking and connections for youth, rejuvenating SAE and agricultural projects by providing students with exciting new opportunities to meet successful young farmers and small beginning farmer service providers, creating opportunities for hands-on learning experiences, and creating new social networking opportunities to keep students engaged with a motivated group of young, committed beginning farmer role models after graduation.
The Supervised Agricultural Experience program is a key component of agricultural education. While working on an SAE project, students learn to apply the concepts and principles taught in their agriculture classes to real-world problems and scenarios. A student selects an SAE project based on his or her interest in one of four areas:
- Exploratory - Learn about the big picture of agriculture and its many related careers.
- Research/Experimentation and Analysis - Conduct research and analyze information to discover new knowledge.
- Ownership/Entrepreneurship - Plan and operate an agriculture-related business.
- Placement - Work for a business or individual, either for pay or for the experience.
It is important that you, the teacher, parent, or student see the SAE as an integral component to the learning process. The SAE is a chance for students to put in to practice what they have learned in the classroom, explore career ideas, and reflect on their experiences.
How can you help? Remember the importance of reflection as part of the learning process - encourage students to keep a journal in which they reflect on what they are doing in their SAE or agricultural project and why it matters to them, their community, and the country. Ask students about their projects and celebrate their challenges, successes, and initiative!
A vibrant and growing agriculture sector is important to the future of everyone. Lets help our high school students explore this exciting career field through their SAE’s and agricultural projects!
The Northeast Beginning Farmer Project Education Team