Farm Credit Affiliation
In 31 years as high school agriscience teacher, Roger King has developed an outstanding
agriculture program that goes beyond the basics to include the latest agricultural
technologies and outside-the-classroom activities to give hands-on experience.
"Having a student enter my classroom and knowing that they are excited about agriculture and that I can play a role in development that excitement by introducing new concepts, revealing answers to unknown concepts and confirming their excitement about agriculture, inspires me," Roger says.
The Holmen, Wisconsin-based agricultural program Roger designed supplies food for the high school and district food service program. Students raise sweet corn, potatoes and recently added asparagus gardens. Using a grant Roger secured, students now purchase and raise chickens. In the past few years, he spearheaded the effort to transition the school’s traditional greenhouse into a hydroponics facility that raises lettuce.
Roger encourages his students to work the concession stand at all school sporting events. Students consistently raise sufficient funds that all FFA and agricultural students are able to attend district, state, and national events. Roger is right there beside them, along with his wife, Diane, who also works for the school. Diane is also supportive of the students, encouraging them in their projects and joining Roger in helping them to pursue agricultural careers.
“Lifelong learning is the outcome I hope to achieve, with students using the experiences gained in my classroom, and through their FFA challenges, whether in their backyard or as a career choice,” Roger says.
Roger has earned many awards throughout his career, most recently being named Wisconsin's 2016 Teacher of the Year. He sees the future of agriculture continuing to be a blend of traditional and organic farming all supported by technology.
“All these roles are a part of the future of agriculture as all areas need to work together to feed the world,” he says. “We will have consumers and producers who will benefit from all aspects of production and we will need the technology to sustain and provide what the consumer wants as we feed the world.”
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