Maddie Dvorak of Florida is the national winner of the American Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers 2023 Collegiate Discussion Meet. AFBF Executive Vice President Joby Young presented her with a plaque at AFBF's FUSION Conference.
photo credit: AFBF Photo, Wales Hunter
The winner of the American Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers Collegiate Discussion Meet is Maddie Dvorak of Florida. She was awarded the top prize following a discussion on the role of farmers in shaping climate initiatives to benefit society overall, as well as their own farms and ranches.
Dvorak is a senior studying international food and resource economics at the University of Florida. She will receive her bachelor’s degree in April.
The Collegiate Discussion Meet is designed to replicate a committee meeting where discussion and active participation are expected from each collegiate participant. Participants are judged on their ability to exchange ideas and information on an agricultural topic and find answers or solutions related to it.
Dvorak qualified for the national competition upon winning the Florida Farm Bureau Collegiate Discussion Meet. As the national winner, she received a $2,900 scholarship from competitive event sponsor CHS Foundation.
In addition to Dvorak, three finalists participated in three rounds of discussion before making it to the Final Four round: Lafe Aarsvold, Minnesota; Brenden Kleiboeker, Missouri; and Weston Svoboda, Nebraska. They each received $1,900 courtesy of CHS Foundation.
Thirty-three competitors participated in this year’s Collegiate Discussion Meet. All competitors (including the four finalists) received a $100 scholarship courtesy of CHS Foundation in recognition of their efforts and making it to the national level; students advancing to the “Sweet 16” round (including the four finalists) received an additional $300 scholarship. CHS provided a total of $15,000 in scholarship funds for the contest.
The YF&R program includes men and women between the ages of 18 and 35. The program’s goals are to help younger Farm Bureau members learn more about agriculture, network with other farmers and realize their full potential as leaders in agriculture and Farm Bureau.
The Collegiate Discussion Meet was held during AFBF’s FUSION Conference, held March 3-6 in Jacksonville, Florida.
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