By Samantha Wallace
Ag. Communications Major
There are countless things I love about California Women for Agriculture (CWA). The members of this organization are go-getters, determined and have a true passion for promoting the agricultural industry. With 20 chapters and 2,000 plus members across the state, the members are actively engaged in public relations, education and legislative advocacy on behalf of agriculture. This summer, I am privileged to intern with San Luis Obispo County Chapter who proudly serves San Luis Obispo, Southern Monterey and Western Kern Counties.
In the short time I’ve been interning with CWA, the meetings have allowed me to see a glimpse of the heart and soul of this organization and I’m thrilled to be working alongside these influential women who are paving the way for a better future.
For those not as familiar with CWA, the organization’s mission is to “promote and protect the agricultural industry, promote and develop the interest of California women involved or interested in agriculture.”
CWA’s efforts are guided by 5 objectives:
1) To speak on behalf of agriculture in an intelligent, informative, direct and truthful manner
2) To keep CWA members informed on legislative activities pertaining to agriculture
3) To join forces when the need arises to deal with agricultural issues and challenges
4) To improve the public image of farmers
5) To develop a rapport with consumers, educators, and governmental & business leaders in communities throughout the county and outlying areas
SLO CWA plays an important role in being a part of the bigger agriculture picture in California Agriculture (CaWomen4Ag).
As leaders, it is our responsibility to make sure the next generation is educated and encouraged to step up to the challenges in today’s agriculture industry. A way that CWA supports the next generation, is by hosting the annual Burgers & BREW festival each fall.
The profits from ticket sales, donations and silent auction go towards scholarships for students in 4-H, FFA and collegiate agricultural scholarships. In 2015, the event raised $10,000 for scholarship endowments. The expectation is to double profits in 2016.
This worthwhile family event takes place on September 4th at the Loading Chute in Creston, CA. Approximately 275 local vendors showcase their tastiest burgers, beer and brew in hopes of being voted “The First Place Winner of Burgers & BREWS 2016”.
Special committees have been formed to ensure that this event runs smoothly. The CWA has been gracious enough to put me as Lead Creative Director. This position puts me in charge of designing flyers, event programs, and managing social media platforms. For these tasks, I use the InDesign skills I learned in AGC 407 publications class at Cal Poly. The amount of responsibility and trust granted to me is humbling and I don’t take it lightly.
The Burgers & BREWS festival and competition is a rewarding event and I know that my time will be a summer well spent. With much work to be done, I am thrilled to see what this internship has in store!