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CCFB News» October 2023

Seeking an Agriculture, Farm or Food related career? Scholarship Opportunities Available

10/05/2023 @ 1:30 pm

Careers in agriculture are more than farming.


According to the USDA’s Economic Research Service, a total of 19.7 million jobs, or 10.3% of U.S. employment, was related to agriculture in 2020. Farming only made up 13.5% of agricultural employment, food service made up 53.4% and food and beverage stores made up 16.5%.


There are more than one million agriculture-related jobs in Illinois. Ag-related careers include plant science, animal science, natural resources, agricultural business, environmental science, agricultural mechanics, food science, diesel mechanics, and more!


Scholarship opportunities available

If you’re looking to pursue one of the many careers available in the agriculture industry, Cook County Farm Bureau has scholarships!


“Moving Ag Forward” Vocational Ag Career Training (available in 3 cycles in 2023/2024) – These scholarships have been designed for individuals and Cook County Farm Bureau members pursuing training in agriculturally related skills including tractor/truck diesel mechanics, CDL for crop, food and livestock hauling, welding, agricultural technology, etc. (Application window open now)


Adult Scholarships (availability based on training sessions and acceptance) – Scholarships for Cook County Farm Bureau members include tuition assistance for

  • Master Urban Farmer training and certification
  • Master Gardener training and certification
  • Illinois Ag Leadership Program (IALP) training program
  • Ag Leaders of Tomorrow (ALOT) training program

(Application window open now)


Howard Paarlberg Excellence in Ag Scholarship ($3500) and General Scholarships ($2000) – Scholarships are available for individuals and Cook County Farm Bureau members that are focused on agriculturally related careers including those interested in farming, greenhouse, agronomy, horticulture, aquaculture, agribusiness/management, rural healthcare, veterinarian medicine, nutrition/food science, agriculture education, forestry, or a number of other agriculturally related pursuits. (Application window opens in December)


Stuenkel Family Scholarship ($3000) – This scholarship has been designed for individuals and CCFB members who are pursuing higher education with a focus on an agriculturally related career in the areas of technology, education, leadership development, and/or mental health. (Application window opens in December)


Mental Health Training Expense Reimbursement – Mental Health Professionals or Cook County Farm Bureau members seeking to assist the farmers and rural community who attend and participate in mental health/suicide prevention training seminars, conferences, or educational sessions may be eligible for support and reimbursement. Contact the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation at 708-354-3276 or email [email protected]. (Available throughout the year)


Visit for more information on these scholarships and to apply.

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