The Virginia Agriculture Leaders Obtaining Results (VALOR) Program has opened the application process for its inaugural class this fall.

The VALOR Program is designed to develop leaders who can effectively engage all segments of the Virginia agricultural community to create collaborative solutions and promote agriculture inside and outside the industry. Participants, ages 25 to 55, will include individuals with a vested interest in the success of Virginia agriculture and leadership for the industry.

“The program’s goal is to explore the many sides to every issue, law, and practice impacting agriculture in our state and beyond. Participants from varied public and private backgrounds will develop a well-rounded understanding of these topics through shared experiences and opportunities, helping them to shape the future of our industry,” said Megan Seibel, the program's director.

The specialized leadership program will consist of 12 experiential seminars spanning approximately 48 days over 24 months. These seminars will address social, political, and economic issues impacting the agriculture industry and its viability in a variety of settings throughout the commonwealth and beyond, including exploration of global agricultural issues, which will culminate with an international experience abroad.

Program applicants are expected to complete a two-part application, due June 15, 2012. Selection interviews will be held in July, and a formal announcement of the inaugural class will be made in August in preparation for the first seminar in the fall. The application, financial information, calendar, and other information regarding the program are available on the program's website. Questions regarding the program or application process should be addressed to Seibel at 540-231-2375.



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