It’s time to shine!

talent

Each year at the National FFA Convention, FFA members from across the nation astound us with a smorgasbord of talents. They are talented as leaders, as advocates and caretakers, as scientists, as farmers and as teachers.

Some of them can even sing and dance!

If you’re an FFA member who loves to sing, perform and/or play an instrument, apply for National FFA Band, Chorus and Talent! You’ll have a blast, make tons of lifelong friends, all while doing something you love.

You can find more information on the requirements and how to apply here.

Also, we are very excited to announce a new competitive portion of our program. For the first time ever, you’ll be able to compete for the title of 2013 National FFA Talent winner! Check the blog again tomorrow for more details…

Video

What is the purpose of FFA Week?

Ever wonder why we have a week devoted to the FFA? Why is it in February? Who is the G-Man?

Check out the video for my take on the week! Have a great FFA week, and get out there and spread the mission of the FFA!

– Brennan
2012-13 Central Region Vice-President

Top Ten Reasons to Join FFA

AK9E0914

1. swAGriculture!
2. When we meet. We eat.
3. “I am in FFA” makes a great pick up line.
4. Never have to worry about what to wear.
5. We can eat our projects.
6. Doesn’t matter if your truck is dirty!
7. ROAD TRIPS!
8. Where else does money grow on trees?
9. Learning and growing outside the classroom.
10. FFA Advisors…too legit to quit!

Like these? We have them on a t-shirt! You can Buy it at www.ffa.org/shop.

Top Ten

A Christmas Meal Resolution

Greetings Everyone!

I hope that your Christmas season was full of GREAT family time and DELICIOUS food! I know mine sure was! As my family gathered around the table Christmas day before the meal, I could not help but notice how the food dishes and trimmings looked like a portrait right out of Better Homes and Gardens magazine. Baked ham(perfectly sliced), dressing(that would make Paula Deen want the recipe), broccoli casserole, sweet potato soufflé, mashed potatoes and gravy, biscuits, pecan pie and sour cream pound cake to top it all off. Needless to say, the Sapp family didn’t leave the dinner table hungry on Christmas!

As I have talked with friends from across the country about their Christmas festivities, it seems the one thing that is consistent about Christmas across America is that we all eat very well! Our families break out their best recipes, trek to the local grocery store and cook for hours to deliver the best of their best.

As I sat on the couch, stuffed on Christmas afternoon, I began to think…. we all rave about Aunt Iris’s baked ham and thank Uncle David for his famous dressing but how often do we take the time to consider how fortunate we are to have the diverse abundant food supply that makes all of our favorite dishes.

We are blessed to live in a country that has the land resources to overcome droughts and disease to provide food for millions around the world. We are blessed to live in a country that values research and technology, which allows us to produce more food with less land, and we are blessed to have men and women who have dedicated their lives to feeding others, even when their profession has not always been considered the most glamorous. We are able to enjoy the Pinterest delights and traditional favorite foods of Christmas and beyond because of the American agriculture industry.

As we turn our attention to the upcoming year and begin to make New Year’s resolutions, let’s consider making a resolution to recognize the efforts of the American farmer. Accomplishing this resolution can be as simple as thanking a local producer for all that they do, or possibly even deciding to follow in their footsteps and pursue a career in agriculture. Nevertheless, in 2013, let’s make a point to refocus on how blessed we are to have a vibrant agriculture industry and continue to innovate ways that we can lead it into the future.

Living to serve,

Clay Sapp

National FFA President

Off to Africa we go!

Excitement and anticipation is running high, as Kenny, Cain, Seth and I depart tomorrow for Monrovia the capital city of Liberia Africa! After a week at home that sped by in a blur, we are headed to Africa for a month with the opportunity to work with 4-H Liberia.We can’t wait for our time near the equator, especially as snow flakes fell at home today.


Liberia and 4-H Liberia has seen some dramatic changes over the past decades. Originally 4-H was brought to Liberia by the U.S. Peace Corps volunteers that worked with the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Education in the 1960s. Because of its success, the Ministries of Agriculture and Education adopted 4-H clubs in schools similar to our FFA programs. At its height, 4-H had a membership of 27,000 young people in 1,950 clubs. Impressive for a country of 3.7 million.

Unfortunately in 1980, much of the Peace Corp left the country because of the military coup and despite efforts to sustain 4-H clubs they did not function as they did prior to the coup. Twenty years of civil war and unrest led to further decrease in the education system and 4-H all but ceased to exist. But all hope was not lost.

 
In 2006, nine students from three universities in Monrovia met to establish an institution that would give children practical leaderships skills to empower them to be self-reliant, good citizens. One of the students came across 4-H on the internet and the vision and mission statement matched the students’ idea. From there the idea took hold and after contacting the U.S.  4-H Headquarters and getting permission they started 4-H Liberia. They operated completely with volunteer staff until February 2012 when through the help of the Ralph C. Norman Foundation and the National 4-H Council, the National Executive Director Umaru Sheriff started receiving a salary.

There mission is that,

4-H Liberia empowers young people to become self-sufficient citizens by developing their potential in premiere leadership, agricultural sustainability and essential life skills.

With a vision that,

As these young people mature, equipped with the knowledge and skills to be productive citizens, Mama Liberia will develop into a wholesome, functioning, democratic society with an abundance of domestic food production.

Currently there are 950 members being directly effected by these ideas with hopes of many, many more. It is humbling to see how the actions of nine individuals can start a movement that will have positive impacts on the lives of people for years to come.

While learning about 4-H Liberia from afar has been interesting, we are very excited and blessed to have the opportunity to experience 4-H Liberia in person and support them in any way that we can. Can’t wait to be in the classroom and meet the staff, teachers, and students!

We hope if internet access permits to provide updates from country if possible so stay tuned for more!

Journal from abroad,

Jason Troendle

Originally posted on National FFA Convention and Expo Blog:

As the last meal bag is sealed, the next one will soon be prepared. Many stomachs will be satisfied as the National FFA Convention & Expo comes to an end. FFA members from across the country and local volunteers  packaged more than one million meals for the Indianapolis community and families around the world in the FFA Rally to Fight Hunger.

Although the rally has ended, FFA members will travel home and see hunger in their communities. “Hunger is being seen in our local communities like never before…hunger is something we don’t want to think about,” says Dwight Armstrong, the National FFA Organization’s chief executive officer.  “We (FFA) believe that we can make a difference, and we envision a world where hunger will be a thing of the past.”

Hunger can be made history with strong effort and collaboration. Many sponsors have come forward with financial assistance to make ending…

View original 234 more words

Originally posted on National FFA Convention and Expo Blog:

FFA members developed their personal tickets to career success in today’s workshop, “Your Ticket to Adventure.”

This interactive workshop was presented by California State University, Chico sophomore Jessica Vazquez and junior Leslie Buckingham. Vazquez and Buckingham guided FFA members through various agriculture career pathways and helped them learn how to meet their career goals.

An important part of FFA is guiding members to career success, Vazquez said. She and Buckingham hoped to make members aware of the opportunities available to them.

“This workshop is really successful in helping students find career success,” she said.

FFA members began by exploring different agriculture career pathways including animal systems; agribusiness systems; environmental systems; food products and processing systems; natural resource systems; plant systems; and power, structural and technology systems.

View original 333 more words