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Northwest student Morgan Duenke recently finished her term as an Agriculture Future of America ambassador. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri

Northwest student Morgan Duenke recently finished her term as an Agriculture Future of America ambassador. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri

May 7, 2021

Duenke serves as ambassador for Agriculture Future of America

By Leah Newell, communication assistant


Northwest Missouri State University student Morgan Duenke is no stranger to promoting agriculture and recently finished her term as one of 25 students in the country who spent the last year representing Agriculture Future of America (AFA).

Duenke, a senior agriculture education major from Laddonia, Missouri, was among the AFA ambassadors representing 21 states while interacting with agribusiness leaders, campus faculty and students to build bridges that foster engagement and innovation in food and agriculture.

“I got to make a lot of meaningful connections and really great friendships throughout the experience talking about an organization I really love,” Duenke said.

Being a student in the School of Agricultural Sciences has been an important part of Duenke’s college experience. Serving as one of Northwest’s Teach Ag ambassadors also provided her with an impactful experience.

“It has been a way for me to interact with high school students and really show my passion for agriculture education and see what a difference I can make,” Duenke said.

She also is active at Northwest as a member of the Sigma Alpha professional agricultural sorority, Collegiate FFA, the Northwest chapter of Collegiate Farm Bureau and Collegiate Cattlemen. In 2018, she was one of 10 Northwest students to receive the AFA Leader and Academic Scholarship.

Duenke said she fell in love with Northwest after touring the University campus and feeling a sense of value in her interactions with faculty. She comes from a third-generation farming family and was involved as a high school student 4H and FFA – two organizations that helped her embrace the farming aspects of her life.

As a Northwest freshman, she lived in an Academic Living Community, which places students with similar majors on the same residential floor, helping them adjust to college life and build relationships with classmates who share their interests.

“Living in Tower Suites was a great way for me to foster friendships, meet new people and make connections in the ag department,” Duenke said.

After college, Duenke aspires to teach agriculture in a nontraditional format, perhaps in a company human resources role. She credits Northwest faculty and advisors for introducing career opportunities to her, and her position as a career ambassador with Career Services helped her learn about the attributes employers look for in job candidates.

“Learning the value of networking and prepping for after college has been something Northwest has definitely helped me understand,” Duenke said. “In the ag department, I know the director, and he knows me. All of those relationships that I’ve built at Northwest have been getting my name out there and creating a reputation for me.”


Media contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704