Aug. 26 2019 08:45 AM

Students furthering their education should definitely check out College Aggies Online.

Who are you more apt to listen to?

• Your peer — A person who is going through the same experience as you, who is the same age as you, and who worries about that same things as you.

• Someone you don’t know — Maybe they aren’t the same age or in the same location, and they aren’t going through what you are going through.

Of course, you’ll pick your peer. That is the person you can relate to.

When it comes to college students, they are the same way. They relate to their peers. That’s why it’s so important to support College Aggies Online.

For the past three years, I've been a dedicated trainer, mentor, and judge for College Aggies Online (CAO), a scholarship competition that starts September 16.

If you are a college student or you know a college student, I encourage you to check out the scholarship program. Not only does it provide a decent amount of scholarship funds to try and offset rising college education costs, but it gives the students real-world learning in online advocacy from the professionals who are in the mix of it every day.

CAO is an initiative of the Animal Ag Alliance that connects college students from across the country who are interested in promoting agriculture. CAO is about developing lifelong advocates for agriculture!

I've seen some amazing advocacy come from the students as they learn how to create entertaining and educational videos and photos. They have tough but persuasive conversations with their peers about animal agriculture where they listen with empathy and respond with their values-based stories.

I believe this college-aged audience is important to engage. This is where people begin to form strong opinions on food and the environment while they are encouraged by their professionals to question everything they know.

Don't pass over this article. Take the time to share it with a college friend and encourage them to sign up, compete for the scholarships, make friends, and learn some skills they will use for a lifetime.

Over these past three years, I can tell you for a fact that College Aggies Online benefits all of us in animal ag and can make a difference. It just needs a little support from you by signing up or passing it along to someone who can.

If you would like to know more about your national checkoff and what we are doing to promote dairy products and dairy farming, please join our Dairy Checkoff Facebook Farmer Group.