University News

WIU Alumna Chosen for Statewide Agricultural Grant

September 28, 2021

Printer friendly version

MACOMB, IL – A 2020 Western Illinois University School of Agriculture alumna has been named one of four winners statewide of an agricultural grant which helps support and retain new teachers.

Anna Shupe is in her second year teaching in the Paris (IL) School District. She was recently named a winner in the Illinois Agricultural Education Teacher Grant Program.

The grant was given to four Illinois agriculture teachers who are in their first-fifth year of teaching. She will receive $2,000 a year for the next five years, as long as she continues teaching agriculture in Illinois.

"I applied for this grant this past May after completing my first year of teaching," said Shupe. "The application consisted mainly of setting goals for myself professionally and for my program."

Shupe applied for the grant in May and said she realized she may be one of the winners after representatives from the Illinois Farm Bureau, Edgar County Farm Bureau, FCAE and IAA Foundation showed up at her school's Homecoming celebration.

"At that point, I realized what was going on," Shupe said. "I was absolutely speechless and had no idea what to think. Being a teacher isn't the most glamorous, high paying job out there. It takes countless hours of work that no one sees and involves lots of unnoticed work. By receiving this award, it just validated that what I am doing is making a difference and that people are noticing all of the hours that I put into teaching and that I am doing something right. This was a huge honor, and I can't thank the IAA Foundation and Illinois Farm Bureau enough for the opportunity."

For more information about the grant program, visit For more information on the WIU School of Agriculture, visit

Posted By: University Communications (
Office of University Communications & Marketing