Since her early involvement in agriculture, junior Chelsea Daugherty has lived and breathed FFA for years.
FFA is a national organization dedicated to the education of agriculture students nationwide.
Daugherty, an agriculture education major, has been involved in FFA since seventh grade, beginning with various competitions.
Since her start with FFA, Daugherty has been involved throughout the state and country.
As a state officer for Kentucky during 2011 and 2012, Daugherty helped lead an international leadership seminar in Argentina with other FFA members from around the U.S.
However, Daugherty is looking to take her involvement to the next step in Indianapolis, Ind., the home of National FFA headquarters.
FFA holds a national conference every year during the last week of October, and on the last day elections for national officers are held.
“I’m eligible for one of six offices,” Daugherty said. “President, Eastern region vice president and secretary.”
Daugherty, who will attend the conference as a national officer candidate, said the elections are a long, in depth competition including personal, agricultural and FFA knowledge interviews.
If elected, Daugherty will move to Indianapolis after the end of classes and finals and would have to take off the next two semesters to serve her term as a national officer.
“Officers are only home for about 60 days for the entire year,” Daugherty said. “But I do have potential to visit every state along with Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.”
As an officer, Daugherty would also have an opportunity to travel abroad to China or Japan to teach agricultural practices, which is something she aspires to do after her graduation from Murray State.
Her ultimate goal outside of the elections is to attend Oregon State and receive her master’s degree in agriculture and teach those practices to others in different countries.
To do so, Daugherty said she hopes to become involved with FFA’s GO: Africa program, which selects six upper-level collegiate members to learn about life-sustaining development work that Catholic Relief Services and its partners are doing throughout the country.
Daugherty does also want to go to different counties through Baptist Ministries.
“I would go as an agricultural missionary,” Daugherty said. “And this would allow me to go and teach agriculture but be able to spread faith.”
Daugherty, who is a collegiate FFA member, does maintain her involvement with chapters in Calloway and Marshall counties through various workshops and events.
However, Daugherty does more than just FFA. She is involved with Alpha Gamma Delta and is the alumni chair for her sorority. She maintains her involvement with Mt. Vernon Church and does local community service at a nursing home.
For now, Daugherty has her eyes set on being elected to a national office, which are available to only six candidates nationwide.
Daugherty said: “Any one of those would be a huge honor.”
Story by Mara Bradley, Staff Writer