In the News

Nebraska Teachers Focus on Agriculture at National Conference

Back (L-R) Diane Swinscoe, Jane Gundvaldson, Anica Brown, Sascha Perry, Brandi Lambert, Matthew Koth. Front (L-R) Ellen Hellerich, Judi Roach, Becky Mayhew, Courtney Shaardt. Not Pictured: Bev Grueber.

LINCOLN, NEB. – The Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation sent eight Nebraska K-12 teachers to the National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference, June 19-23 in Kansas City, MO.

“Each of these 10 students have demonstrated a passion for agriculture and their excitement to continue to grow the agricultural education and FFA programs in Nebraska,” said Megahn Schafer, executive director of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation. “We are happy to support scholarships that align with our vision of developing strong agricultural leaders to ensure a bright future for agriculture in Nebraska,” she continued.

The annual conference uses workshops, awards ceremonies, and tours of agricultural operation to show general K-12 education teachers as how agriculture can be used effectively in formal classroom instruction.

Brandi Lambert, a first-grade teacher in Waverly, is one of the Nebraska teachers that attended the three-day conference. “The whole conference was so inspiring and reaffirmed my belief of the importance of agriculture in the classroom,” she said. “I would encourage other teachers to attend the conference because of the wealth of ideas, resources, and connections that you walk away with.”

“I want the students in my classroom to take away a new appreciation for all that farmers do to feed the world.” Said Jane Gundvaldson, who received the trip in conjunction with receiving one of the Foundation’s Teacher of the Year Awards. “We have great farming happening in our area, but students just don’t have the opportunity to learn about it. I want to make a difference in their lives and have them learn about agriculture in Nebraska, not just the Gretna area, but the entire state. I can do this when teaching Nebraska history, math, science, or even writing!”

Teachers from across Nebraska attended, including teachers from Omaha, Gretna, Lincoln, Sidney, Minatare, Waverly, and North Bend. Three teachers were recognized on stage at the conference – Matthew Koth and Jane Gundvaldson as Nebraska’s Teacher of the Year Award recipients, and Judi Roach and Jane Gundvaldson as recipients of the CHS Conference Scholarship.

Megahn Schafer, executive director of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation, says supporting teachers is a smart investment. “We are thrilled to partner with teachers who recognize the benefits of incorporating agriculture into their classrooms. The impact of attending this conference will multiply as they share the knowledge and resources gained with their students and fellow teachers,” she said.

The mission of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation is to engage youth, educators, and the general public to promote an understanding of the vital importance of agriculture in the lives of all Nebraskans. The Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. For more information about the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation, visit

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