Off-Farm Income


Our guest today has so much passion, enthusiasm, and fire for the FFA that you would never guess that her first two years in the organization were spent being basically inactive.  Brooklin Drake came into the FFA simply by taking agriculture classes in high school in her small, agricultural community in central New York State.  She was kind of a member by default, and she never really pursued anything.  But, her first trip to the New York State FFA Convention changed all of that.

Brooklin cannot really put a finger on what it was about the convention that motivated her so much.  What is clear, is that she caught fire once the convention took place.  From that point, at the end of her sophomore year, she has been on a very rapid, upward trajectory.

As a senior in high school, Brooklin is now her district's president, and she is strongly considering a run for a state officer position.  She has started a supervised agricultural experience called "Drake's Pumpkin Patch" and she is selling pumpkins, gourds, and mums on the side of the road in a stand that she built.  She is also a recipient of two grants for a total of $1500 to develop her business even further.

Things don't necessarily come naturally to Brooklin however.  Her first year of growing her pumpkin patch was an utter failure, and she didn't sell any.  However, she didn't focus on the negative.  The next year she was determined to do better, and that led to the development of her roadside stand and a lot of sales of pumpkins.  And, the result of all of this?  A $1,000 donation to her very own FFA chapter.