MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is accepting applications for the next Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council. High school students who will be seniors during the 2023 – 2024 school year should apply now for the council.
The purpose of the Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council is to encourage young people to engage with state government and increase their awareness of DATCP’s interactions with Wisconsin’s agriculture industry. Students serve a one-year term and receive a certificate at the completion of their term.
“In the Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council I was showered with many topics, which allowed me to expand upon my love for animals and learn about different ways DATCP is involved in the industry,” said Arionna Harris, a council member from Milwaukee. “Being on the council makes you want to become a member of DATCP itself!”
The goals of the council are to highlight agricultural-related careers, share resources available for farmers, provide insight in agricultural policy development, and increase networking opportunities for participants. Members participate in virtual monthly sessions to listen to presentations, engage in discussions, and connect with professionals across the agriculture industry.
“The Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council allows me to share my opinions and learn about the many parts of government that are involved with Wisconsin agriculture,” added Henry Larson, a council member from Reedsburg. “The members I have been on the council with have unique viewpoints on agriculture that have made this great learning experience that much more complete.”
The council is comprised of 15 members. DATCP seeks to have at least one member from each of the nine council districts. The remaining seats are filled with at-large members. A map and listing of which counties are located in each of the nine districts is available at AgYouthCouncil.wi.gov.
“The Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council has been a great opportunity to become involved with the government as a young agriculture enthusiast,” explained Jacob Harbaugh, a council member from Marion. “I have established relationships with other members that I will be able to use in my professional life after school, and learn about all various sectors of Wisconsin agriculture that are important to our state’s economy.”
To apply, students must complete an application form, which includes a brief essay sharing their involvement in agriculture and how their Council participation will benefit their future education or career plans. Applicants must also submit a one-minute video and letter of recommendation.
“The Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council has been a truly impactful experience,” concluded Claire Esselman, a council member from Clinton. “I received insight from the monthly meetings on future careers and educational paths geared toward my interest. I recommend the Wisconsin Agriculture Youth Council to those who aspire to pursue agriculture or to learn more about the industry.”
DATCP will accept applications through March 31, 2023. To access the application and additional information, visit AgYouthCouncil.wi.gov.