Teaching young agriculturists to ‘imagine’ at the Future Farmers of America Eighty-fifth Annual Convention


| CFAN June/July 2013 Web Exclusive Feature |

Orlando, Florida opened her heart and arms to the eighty-fifth Annual Future Farmers of America State Convention from June 10-14. With their commanding yet humble arrival, these young delegates, representing high school chapters from all over the state, descended on the Caribe Royale Orlando in the second week of June. Securely nestled in its serene 45 acres of lavish surroundings, the luxurious hotel made everyone feel welcome.[emember_protected custom_msg=”Click here and register now to read the rest of the article!”]

Paying tribute to achievements endeared to both past and present generations of agriculturalists and receiving the opportunity to develop their potential for leadership, personal growth, and career success, is what the convention held for the students.

Students, along with alumni, advisors, and parents, were inspired to be mindful of the impact they have, and can continue to have, in such an important industry. A whole new strength of heart was instilled in all supporters of agriculture to better serve their community and to take better care of the land and all natural resources.

Receiving “cutting edge” education during the career development events that were held was an excellent opportunity for teachers and students alike to gain knowledge and insight in the future of agriculture. Character and moral building encouragement was also given as a way to touch the students’ hearts and grow their love for agriculture.

During the convention there were workshops for not only the students, but also for the teachers. Learning how to handle stress, managing student recordkeeping systems, as well as keeping up with new teaching materials and tools were all hot topics for instructors.

Paul Webb, agriculture advisor from Kathleen High School says, “The agriculture industry is going to need leaders and trained managers in the future. Through the FFA convention activities, students that attended were able to see what is available for them as a possible career after they finish their education. Additionally, the leaders in the industry can see some of the best students that we have in Florida.”

Webb also observes, “One of the best parts of the convention were speakers and the retiring addresses given by the state officers. These speeches reached out to the students with messages that spoke of leadership improvement and personal character development.”

This year was historic as 4,279 students, registered members, and guests attended the convention.

“Imagine” was the theme this year.  Amy McCallister, FFA’s state advisor confides, “‘Imagine’ is a challenge for FFA members to develop awareness of the agriculture industry, uphold the FFA mission, and live by the FFA motto.”

Webb reflects, “I am proud to be not only an advisor and teacher to these students but
also a former member. I still remember the lessons that my advisor taught me. Not only lessons about agriculture, but also about life skills and behaviors.” He continues, “The Caribe Royale Resort and Conference Center in Orlando was hit by a tidal wave of blue and gold jackets. As an advisor, I was thrilled to hear other guests at the hotel comment on how nice our students look and how impressed they were with the behavior and talent that the FFA members displayed.”

CREDITS

story by DALE BLISS [/emember_protected]