In 2016 the National FFA Organization saw an incredible opportunity to help develop and advance agricultural education teachers across the country. They recognized their ability to accomplish this with a professional development opportunity that strategically chose teachers in the USA who came from different backgrounds; who represented different experiences; those who were teaching interesting and/or advanced curriculum in their classrooms; and those who had a desire to pass their knowledge and experiences onto their peers. This opportunity was used to create the National Teacher Ambassador program.
Nikki Doll (left) and Breanna Bregel (right) have been selected as 2020-21 National Teacher Ambassadors, a program of the National FFA Organization.
Nikki Doll (left) is an agriculture education teacher in Center, ND. Breanna Bregel (right) is an agriculture education teacher in Wahpeton, ND.
Since the program was launched, less than 150 ag. teachers from across the country have been selected to participate in the program. In the program’s inaugural year, Brent Arendt, ag. teacher at the Park River FFA Chapter, was the first North Dakota educator to be selected for the program, and has been the only one since. In April of 2020 the National FFA Organization released the names of those selected as a 2020-21 National Teacher Ambassador. Within the group of 59 teachers selected, two are educators representing the great state of North Dakota. Nikki Doll (Center FFA) and Breanna Bregel (Wahpeton FFA) will both take part in this incredible opportunity.
Click here for the complete list of 59 teachers selected to serve as 2020-21 National Teacher Ambassadors.
The program, designed to equip its participants with knowledge to take advantage of opportunities, curriculum and resources within the National FFA Organization, consists of multiple different online training seminars, meetings and events. Although the two ND teachers will be learning and experiencing this program together, it was separate motivations that sparked them to apply. The focus on networking and the proper implementation of new ideas are what encouraged Breanna Bregel to apply.
“Nikki and I are both young in the profession and we want to try new things,” says Bregel. “We’re young enough to not be ‘set in our ways’ in anything yet. We’re open, willing and want to try everything we can.”Breanna Bregel
Nikki Doll is looking forward to using this experience and opportunity to further develop the creativity she brings to her classroom.
“One of my favorite things is getting creative to create different learning environments for students that are fun, immersive and create inquiry-based learning. I want to learn how I can show fellow ND ag. teachers how to adapt resources that might not fit what we need or how to make their own.”Nikki Doll
The two teachers will use their position as a 2020-21 Teacher Ambassador throughout the entire school year by serving as a resource for fellow ND teachers by answering questions about National FFA programs, applications and helping direct them to resources for their classroom. This year of service, for them, is viewed as an opportunity to help create innovation, change and new ideas across North Dakota classrooms.
“I really hope both young and more experienced teachers in ND use us as a resource,” says Breanna Bregel. “It’s a gift to our students to not stay stagnant.”
“The students throughout North Dakota classrooms deserve to have a good teacher,” says Doll. “We need to give them that with an education that comes alive.”