top of page


For students who ask their teachers, "When will I ever use this in the real world?" Career and Leadership Development Events (CDE/LDE) are the answer. Since 1928, FFA has worked to create CDEs and LDEs that demonstrate the meaningful connections between classroom instruction and real-life scenarios. CDEs build on what is learned in agricultural classes and the FFA. 

The events are designed to help prepare students for careers in agriculture. Classroom instruction comes alive as students demonstrate their skills in a competitive setting. CDEs test the abilities of individuals and teams in 24 major areas of agricultural instruction. 


AGRICULTURAL COMMUNICATIONS - Students interested in journalism, broadcasting, web design and more learn to communicate effectively while advocating for agriculture.

AGRICULTURAL SALES - This event demonstrates the professional sales process including customer relations, advertising and promotions, and product display.  A general knowledge exam, present a product summary, and make a sales presentation for an agricultural product.  


AGRICULTURAL TECHNOLOGY & MECHANICAL SYSTEMS - Students develop technical knowledge and an ability to work with others to solve complex agricultural problems.

AGRONOMY - This event is to build and prove skills in agronomic sciences.  A written exam, identify seeds, plants, diseases, damages and other agronomic factors.  In addition, contestants evaluate market and seed grain classes and grade grain.

DAIRY CATTLE EVALUATION & MANAGEMENT - Students develop skills important to dairy cattle selection and herd management via this team-based event.

DAIRY CATTLE HANDLERS ACTIVITY - Handlers earn recognition for their ability to present dairy animals during the Dairy Cattle Management and Evaluation CDE.

ENVIRONMENTAL & NATURAL RESOURCES - Provides competing students an opportunity to gain awareness and demonstrate knowledge in areas that affect our air, soil and water.

FARM & AGRIBUSINESS MANAGEMENT - Students learn business skills and apply economic principles to agricultural businesses.
FLORICULTURE - Students identify plants, judge flower arrangements and solve problems using skills important to horticulture and floral careers.

FOOD SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY - Students display an in-depth understanding of food product development, food presentation and food safety issues.

HORSE EVALUATION - In the event, student evaluate and rank horses on breed characteristics, conformation and performance.  Team members cooperatively complete problems related to equine selection, management, nutrition and production.  They also give oral reasons explaining their placing of various classes.

LAND JUDGING - Members participating in land judging will evaluate four sites of land.  Sites vary in location annually.  At each site, students determine the following land characteristics: surface soil texture, internal drainage, depth of soil, slope of the land, erosion hazards and degree of salinity.  Using this information, members determine the land classification and select the proper management practices to be used on the sites evaluated. 

LIVESTOCK EVALUATION - This event helps students learn to evaluate beef cattle, sheep, swine and defend their decisions.  Participants evaluate two classes of each species and place these classes based on market and breeding usage, physical characteristics, and performance records. 

MEATS EVALUATION & TECHNOLOGY - In the Meats Evaluation and Technology CDE, students develop the skills needed for careers in the meat animal industry.

MILK QUALITY & PRODUCTS - Participants in the Milk Quality and Products CDE demonstrate their knowledge about the quality production, processing, distribution, promotion and marketing of milk and dairy foods.

NURSERY/LANDSCAPE - The Nursery⁄Landscape CDE tests students skills in horticultural principles, from landscape design to nursery propagation.

RANGE JUDGING - This event is designed to teach students to evaluate potential productivity, current conditions, and possible treatments that can be utilized to produce forages and grasses most useful to man and animals.  The contest includes plant identification and an understanding of each plant's characteristics, identification of the types of rand sites and how they respond various environmental factors. 

This career development event is designed to assess student knowledge, application, analytical,& evaluation abilities in the area of small animal care, veterinary skills, and pet store management. 

bottom of page