National Beef Ambassador Program

National Beef Ambassador Program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a National Beef Ambassador?
National Beef Ambassadors are passionate youth advocates for the beef community.  The individuals on the National Beef Ambassador Team are the official youth representatives of the American National CattleWomen, Inc. [ANCW] and the beef industry.  Each year a team of five National Beef Ambassadors is selected during a national contest to travel the United States sharing the story of beef from pasture to plate with consumers and students.


What is the purpose of the National Beef Ambassador Program?
The purpose of the program is to provide American consumers and students with positive nutritional, economic, and environmental stewardship information related to beef consumption and the beef industry.   Participants learn how to effectively address issues and misconceptions, accurately share industry practices, and promote the versatile uses of beef. 


Who can become a National Beef Ambassador?
Any student, ages 17-20 (as of September 1 of the current contest year) who is enthusiastic about the beef industry is eligible to compete for their state’s Beef Ambassador contest.  State Beef Ambassador programs are generally sponsored by local CattleWomen organizations and are held at various times during the year.  Individual states then sponsor one annual winner to compete at the National Beef Ambassador contest to vie for one of five spots on the national team.  Contestants may enter the national contest only one time.

The five individuals with the highest combined scores are selected to join the team.  The individuals selected are required to attend a set number of appearances each year and complete weekly social media activities such as blogging and posting to Twitter and Facebook.  

To be eligible to compete, SR contestants must complete the following:
    1) One Media Interview: local, state, or national print, radio or television media
    2) Two Consumer Promotions: consumer events such as in-store demonstrations and health fairs
    3) Three Youth Presentations: made to elementary age youth 


Who can compete in the Junior division of the National Beef Ambassador program?
In 2010, a National Junior Beef Ambassador category was added to the National Beef Ambassador contest to provide opportunities for our youth to gain knowledge, advocacy skills and an understanding of the importance of beef advocacy and promotion. Eligible contestants in the Junior category are between the ages of 12-16 (as of September 1, of the current contest year) and there is no pre-requisite or qualification process for Junior contestants to compete at the National Beef Ambassador contest and they can compete as many times as they’d like until reaching the age of the Senior division.


What are the age requirements for the National Beef Ambassador contest?
The Senior division is open to youth ages 17-20 (as of September 1, of the current contest year) and the Junior division is open to youth ages 12-16 (as of September 1, of the current contest year).   Contestants under the age of 18 are required to have an adult chaperone.


When is the 2016 National Beef Ambassador contest?
The contest to select the 2016 National Beef Ambassador team will be September 25-26, 2015. Contestants are required to attend all days and activities during the contest. 


Where will the 2016 National Beef Ambassador contest be held?
The 2016 contest location will be announced in the spring of 2015. See the NBAP Competition page for more information.


What does a winner of the National Beef Ambassador contest receive?
In addition to receiving national recognition for winning the National Beef Ambassador Program, the Senior winners receive cash awards, iPads, scholarships, industry and media training, travel opportunities across the United States, invaluable experience and exposure in the beef industry, an opportunity to receive an internship with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and more!   

Junior Beef Ambassadors winners receive cash awards, industry training opportunities, and national recognition. 


How long is the term of a National Beef Ambassador?
The term of the National Beef Ambassador Team is one year, beginning October 1st.  


What are the judged events at the National Beef Ambassador contest?
Senior National Beef Ambassador contestants compete in four categories:

1) Issues response- Contestants will be provided with a recently published news article regarding the beef industry.  Using a computer provided by the NBAP each contestant will compose a brief (150 words or less) response to the article.  The responses will be judged by staff currently working in the online environment.  The judges will score the contestants on their ability to respond to an industry article by thoughtfully answering questions, identifying misinformation and listing positive consumer information. 

2) Consumer Demonstration- A mock consumer promotion event will be set up for the contestants.  Each contestant will be provided with a “sample” to serve as well as beef industry production and nutrition literature and recipes.  Scripted “Consumers” will approach the table to take the sample.  They will ask questions to test the contestant’s knowledge, capacity to perform in the field and ability to present beef in a positive light.  A panel of judges will observe and score each contestant on their ability to educate the consumer and provide the consumers with the appropriate information to answer their questions.

3) Education and Outreach-In this category, contestants will choose to complete one of three equally-weighted activities/events designed to advocate for beef with youth and/or millennial audiences.  Creativity and overall impact of the contestants’ efforts will be evaluated.  Contestants may choose from the following activities/events:

Option #1-Social Media Outreach via Facebook-Contestants will highlight activities which promote beef using Facebook.  Contestants will submit a completed “Beef Advocacy” form explaining how they used Facebook to engage in beef advocacy activities and during the contest, judges will review the form and conduct a five-minute interview to learn more about their Facebook beef advocacy efforts. 

 Example:  A 30-minute lean beef meal campaign is developed and implemented by the contestant over a six-week period.  Blog posts about cooking with beef are shared, www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com recipes are linked and short YouTube videos featuring millennials learning to cook with beef are featured.  Posts concentrate on generating conversations with peers and Facebook insights reports are tracked to evaluate weekly reach. 

Option #2-Campus Event-Contestants will highlight a campus beef promotion event conducted on a high school or college/university campus.  Contestants will submit the “Beef Advocacy” form explaining their beef advocacy events on campus and during the contest judges will review the form and conduct a five-minute interview to learn more about their campus beef advocacy event.   

 Example:  A campus event is planned and implemented to connect students with beef on Earth Day.  Contestant designs short, engaging activities for students to discuss their concerns related to beef’s environmental footprint and to explore the myths and facts about the impact of grain-finished and grass-finished beef.  Total number of students impacted and their overall level of engagement is measured and reported.  

Option #3-Youth Classroom Presentation– Contestants will highlight one beef education presentation made to a student group (18 or younger).  Contestants will submit the “Beef Advocacy” form explaining their beef advocacy education approach and during the contest, judges will review the form and conduct a five-minute interview to learn more about their presentation.

 Example:  A lesson related to lean beef and nutrition is developed and conducted for a middle-school classroom.  An interactive activity where students compare the nutrients, calories and taste of popular protein choices is conducted.  Students also create their own unique spice rub from a simple variety of spices to take home and cook with their families.   

All of the activities/events represented in this category must be the unique work of the contestant.  Lesson plans, strategies, etc. may not be  developed by CattleWomen, State Beef Councils, any agriculture based group, etc. 

4) Media interview-The contestant will participate in a mock media interview.  The interviewer will have pre-determined questions to ask each contestant with the option to ask follow-up questions in order to extrapolate additional knowledge or clarify a point.  A panel of judges will observe the interaction for: knowledge, articulation, poise and the contestant’s ability to “Tell the Beef Production Story” and present the industry in a positive light.  Scoring will be done by the judges only.  The contestants should be well versed in all areas of beef production and the beef industry relating to consumers.  Special attention should be paid to all current industry issues.

The Junior contest will include two contest categories:

1) Media Interview - The contestant will participate in a 10-minute mock media interview.  The interviewer will have pre-determined questions to ask each contestant with the option to ask follow-up questions in order to extrapolate additional knowledge or clarify a point.  A panel of judges will observe the interaction for: knowledge, articulation, poise and the contestant’s ability to “Tell the Beef Production Story” and present the industry in a positive light.  Scoring will be done by the judges only.  The contestants should be well versed in all areas of beef production and the beef industry relating to consumers.  Special attention should be paid to all current industry issues.

2) Consumer Promotion - A mock consumer promotion event will be set up for the contestants.  Each contestant will be provided with a “sample” to serve as well as beef literature and recipes (samples of literature that will be available will be provided prior to the competition).  Scripted “Consumers” will approach the table to take the sample. They will ask questions to test the contestant’s knowledge, capacity to perform in the field, and ability to present beef in a positive light.  A panel of judges will observe and score each contestant on their ability to educate the consumer and provide the consumers with the appropriate information to answer their questions. Each contestant will have 10-minutes to interact with the three “Consumers” who will ask two questions each.  Contestants are able to ask the consumers questions to engage a deeper dialogue about beef, and are encouraged to do so. 

3)  Issues Response - Contestants will be provided with a recently published news article regarding the beef industry.  Using a computer provided by the NBAP, each contestant will compose a brief (250 words or less) response to the article in a “Letter to the Editor” type format.  The judges will score the contestants on their ability to respond to an industry article.  Contestants will not be allowed to use any printed materials/resources during this section of the competition and will have 30-minutes to craft their responses.   


How do I find information about my state’s Beef Ambassador program?
You can locate your state’s Beef Ambassador Chair by contacting your local CattleWomen’s association.  You may also contact the National Beef Ambassador Program Manager at 303-850-3440 or sbohnenkamp@ancw.org


Who sponsors and funds the National Beef Ambassador Program (NBAP)?
The National Beef Ambassador Program is funded in part by The Beef Checkoff Program (www.MyBeefCheckoff.com).  The Beef Checkoff was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill and assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.

The American National CattleWomen, Inc. (ANCW), manages the NBAP as a contractor for the Beef Checkoff Program.  The ANCW is one of the longest-standing cattle women organizations, established in 1952 as a national, nonprofit organization.  It is a voice for women who share a passion for the U.S. beef industry, promoting and supporting the industry while encouraging women involved in beef and related agribusiness.

Additional funding is provided by industry partners who believe in supporting the next generation of cattle producers and advocates.


What is the difference between the National Beef Ambassador Program and the Masters of Beef Advocacy Program (MBA)?
The NBAP and MBA are both powerful programs funded in part by the Beef Checkoff, however, they each offer unique benefits.  The NBAP is an exclusive spokesperson program only open to youth who are passionate about the beef industry.  Winners are required to complete appearances and special projects during their term.  The MBA is a complimentary and educational program which provides important industry training to advocates and beef producers of all ages and backgrounds.  MBA graduates are not required to complete any post-education activities, but are encouraged to become active members of the social media advocate community.

All NBAP SR contestants are required to obtain their MBA to expand their knowledge of the industry.  


Do NBAP contestants have to own cattle to compete?
All contestants are expected to be well educated about the beef industry, including animal well-being, environmental stewardship, beef safety and nutrition, and current beef issues.  There is no requirement for a National Beef Ambassador contestant to own cattle. 

Revision Date:  10/28/14

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