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Kristy Meyer, National FFA Organization
KMeyer@ffa.org

Charmion N. Kinder, Discovery Education
Charmion_Kinder@discovery.com


National FFA Organization, John Deere and Discovery Education Team Up to Introduce the Next Generation of Manufacturers to Innovative and Accessible Careers In STEM

– ‘Careers that Innovate’ Virtual Field Trip to Spotlight Opportunities in Engineering, Technology and Advanced Manufacturing as a Pathway to 21st Century Skill-Building and Career Readiness –

Silver Spring, Md. (Monday, April 30, 2018) – The National FFA Organization, John Deere, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, are teaming up to host a new Virtual Field Trip entitled John Deere: Careers that Innovate on Thursday, May 3, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT. During this immersive experience, high school students will take a tour of the John Deere facility in Moline, Ill., where they will be introduced to a range of interesting career paths, including: marketing, engineering, supply chain management and production.

The Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip will uncover how professionals in advanced manufacturing work together to implement quality control as they identify challenges, produce solutions, think critically and communicate effectively to address consumer’s needs. Students will also meet John Deere team members who are instrumental in the design, manufacturing and marketing process, as they explore how the John Deere 8R Family of Tractors are produced today. Educators, parents, student advocates and members of the community may register for the John Deere: Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip at agexplorer.com/virtual-field-trip.

Dave Gilmore, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing and Sales, John Deere says, “We are proud to be the longest-running FFA sponsor for over 75 years. We share a common commitment to the future of agriculture and want to take this opportunity to introduce students to John Deere careers. Through the Virtual Field Trip, we hope that students will gain a better understanding of our wide variety of career paths and get a glimpse of our high-tech manufacturing processes and facilities.”

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 7-in-10 production jobs are sourced from the manufacturing industry sector. The Careers that Innovate experience will provide a companion activity that engages students and will illustrate a range of highly-skilled careers – from product planner to production supervisor – involved in advanced manufacturing. The educational immersion will also underscore how advanced manufacturing utilizes technology and the engineering process to improve products and processes.

“With job openings expanding rapidly every year in agriculture, there is no better time than now to start sparking student interest in the field,” said Mark Poeschl, CEO of the National FFA Organization. “We are thrilled to continue the AgExplorer mission in partnership with John Deere and Discovery Education to transform today’s high school students into the field’s leaders of tomorrow.”

To aid educators and participants in integrating this virtual event into classroom instruction, the National FFA Organization, John Deere and Discovery Education have made standards-aligned Virtual Field Trip teaching resources available for classroom use online. Educators and classrooms are also invited to deepen their experience by joining the conversation and asking questions of participants LIVE on Twitter @NationalFFA, @DiscoveryEd and using the hashtag #AgExplorerVFT. Following the live event, the Virtual Field Trip will be made available on-demand through AgExplorer.com.

“Discovery Education applauds the National FFA Organization and John Deere’s leadership in making STEM careers accessible to the next generation of innovators,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Discovery Education. “AgExplorer provides educators with invaluable educational resources that build bridges to career exploration and we know that immersive, stimulating virtual experiences accelerate student learning as they develop and grow.”

Launched in 2016, AgExplorer.com offers teachers and students a deep database of career profiles that help students connect what they are learning in school to future careers. Career pathways highlighted include: power, structural and technical systems; biotechnology systems; environmental service systems; food products and processing systems; animal systems; natural resources systems; plant systems and agricultural education. In addition, AgExplorer.com includes more than 220 career descriptions, education requirements, average salary, links to a college and university database and more all designed to help students. To access the site’s free resources, visit here.

“The Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip is an immersive experience that will help students and teachers collaborate to energize minds,” said Patti Grammens, teacher at Lakeside Middle School in Georgia’s Forsyth County Schools. “AgExplorer helps to expand students’ exposure to career opportunities beyond the walls of the classroom and unlocks the power of their curiosity.”   

The John Deere: Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Tip is also available through Discovery Education Streaming Plus. For more information about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit DiscoveryEducation.com. Stay connected with Discovery Education on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @DiscoveryEd.

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About National FFA Organization:
The National FFA Organization is a national youth organization of 629,367 student members as part of 7,757 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at FFA.org, on Facebook, Twitter and the official National FFA Organization blog.

About John Deere:
Deere & Company (www.JohnDeere.com) is a world leader in providing advanced products and services and is committed to the success of customers whose work is linked to the land - those who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon the land to meet the world's dramatically increasing need for food, fuel, shelter and infrastructure. Since 1837, John Deere has delivered innovative products of superior quality built on a tradition of integrity. Visit, deere.com.

About Discovery Education:
As the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12 classrooms worldwide, Discovery Education is transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional learning, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are available in approximately half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries around the globe. Inspired by Discovery, Inc., Discovery Education partners with districts, states, and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Explore the future of education at DiscoveryEducation.com.