Special to the Reporter

Agricultural education teachers from across the United States will descend upon Tarleton State University’s campus to participate in the Delta Conference. The conference will be held June 21-26 and provide hands-on leadership and classroom activities.

The national five-day learning event was developed by the National FFA Organization for agricultural education teachers to help prepare the teachers to serve nearly 1.3 million students enrolled in agricultural education courses throughout the United States.

Named “Delta” in reference to the Greek symbol for change, the conference is based on the premise that “every student in every classroom can learn through every teacher.”

Previous Delta Conferences were held at Colorado Springs, Colo., in 2005 and Indianapolis, Ind., home to the National FFA Organization, in 2006. The Delta Conference is in its third year at Tarleton. The 2007 and 2008 conferences were both a huge success. Tarleton’s 2007 conference was the first Delta to be hosted by an organization other than the National FFA Organization.

Dr. Kyle McGregor, associate professor in the agricultural services and development at Tarleton, is once again heading up the conference at Tarleton.

“It’s really a full-contact conference,” McGregor said. “Agricultural educators will be learning the most modern, brain-based, cooperative and active teaching techniques coupled with advanced leadership development. This year’s conference will bring outstanding agricultural educators from 14 states across the nation, and is poised to be another successful event.”

The conference goal is also to help ensure every student enrolled in an agricultural education course is ready to make a positive contribution in today’s world.

Tarleton’s College of Agriculture and Human Sciences, along with title sponsor, CEV Multimedia, Lubbock, Texas, and local donors, will sponsor the event.

Conference participants will also be teamed-up with master teacher mentors to be coached in engagement strategies, personal and professional development, leadership development and community involvement.

“We recruit teacher mentors in the field who have received advanced training in cognitive coaching and pedagogy and will serve as mentors at the conference and throughout the year,” McGregor said. “Typically the conference participants will get started first thing in the morning and it’s common for them to continue working late into the night.”

Tarleton is known as a national leader in agricultural education teacher certification and produces 30 to 45 agricultural science instructors each year. The university’s agricultural services and development department offers students varied opportunities for degrees ranging from general degrees to teaching, extension and industry to communications as well as an international degree.

To learn more about the conference and scheduled activities, go online to www.tarleton.edu/~deltaconference.