Our small community of less than 200 people, nestled in the northeastern prairie of South Dakota, boasts an agricultural education program that is merely six years old. In that short amount of time, my students have become invested in agricultural education and passionate about our industry. Our FFA chapter has had many local, district and state winners, in addition to national qualifiers in the agriscience fair competition.
My students frequently tell me how much they love agriculture education classes and better yet, how much they appreciate that ag classes are hands-on and applicable to real life scenarios.
Our students are ambitious, creative, inquisitive, genuine and humble. I could not be more proud to be the ag teacher and FFA advisor in our school district. These kids are rockstars!
This fall, our ag ed program was gracious to receive a Lincoln Torchmate 4400 plasma table to teach our students with through a state grant program. The table has arrived, but before students can begin cutting metal, they must learn the ropes in the design software. With each of our students having a personal laptop, putting the software in their hands has been simple. However, the tools that streamline CAD design for each student - a computer mouse, mouse pad and jump drive - are lacking and therefore, we're asking for your help to supply the tools needed for success in this project area!
The use of a plasma table and CAD design software in the ag education classroom not only introduces career ready skills to students in the high demand manufacturing and welding fields in our area, but it also applies general education applications such as math and science and boosts creativity!
The use of this advanced technology in our classroom is preparing students for experiences beyond high school and is identical to equipment seen in industry today. While the supplies requested in this project may seem minor and insignificant in the big picture, they set students up for success and allow them to focus on precise designs and the technical skills associated with CAD design.
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