Gov. John Bel Edwards helped announce Nov. 20 the creation of a statewide scholarship agreement between the Louisiana Community and Technical College system and the Louisiana FFA.

The agreement calls for a $500, one-time scholarship for every FFA member who graduates from a Louisiana high school and a $1,000 one-time scholarship for each state champion to any LCTCS college, beginning with the high school graduating class of 2017-18.

FFA students who compete in the Annual State Conference and are selected as a state champion will be offered the $1,000 scholarship. The scholarship offer will be valid for the fall semester following high school graduation only.

Monty Sullivan, president of LCTCS, said the program was conceived to attract high school graduates who aren't planning to go to college.

"We have about 40,000 graduates (annually) with about 10,000 of those leaving high school and not entering college or the military," Sullivan said. "These are the students who need to know that we care about their futures and that their local community and technical college is a viable post-secondary option."

Eric Smith, Louisiana’s FFA adviser, said the scholarship agreement is already creating a buzz.

"It's blown up and already inspired a lot of teachers and students," Smith said. "It's the most-viewed Facebook post we've had, and I've had constant calls from teachers who want to know more about the program."