For Archie FFA member, Mackenzie Porter, a blue and gold jacket has become a vehicle of discovery, opportunity and passion.
“Growing up, I didn’t have the opportunity to be involved in 4H or agriculture. In middle school I began to learn more about ag and showing, but it (agriculture) didn’t become a priority until I joined the Archie FFA chapter my freshman year of high school,” she says.
Having held the offices of Reporter, Secretary and currently serving as chapter President, Mackenzie has also served as the Area 7 Sentinel and plans to run for a Missouri State FFA office in the near future.
Porter credits FFA in the establishment of her work ethic and ability to communicate with anyone.
“When my Dad first started working for AGI SureTrack, I would come into the office after school and wait for him to get done,” she says, “I started talking to people in the office and John Schaeffer, the lab manager, offered me a job working in the lab.”
That was in 2017, two years later, Mackenzie is still an important part of the AGI SureTrack team, spending her summers and after-school hours working in the grain lab.
Mackenzie says that her FFA Advisor, Mr. Matt McIntire, has also been very influential in her FFA career, helping her to learn about opportunities and supporting her to try new things.
“Mr. McIntire always pushes me to go one step further than I think I can,” she says, “He is always there to instill my work ethic and support me in everything I want to try!”
“My experiences with FFA and AGI SureTrack have helped me to see what kind of real-life opportunities exist and what I can do with a degree in agriculture,” Mackenzie says. “And both organizations have helped me to realize how much I want to stay involved in agriculture after I graduate from high school.”
This coming fall, Mackenzie will don the black and gold, joining the ranks of MU-CAFNR’s 2020 freshman class.
Mackenzie is the daughter of AGI SureTrack Market Development Coordinator, Jeramy Porter.