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the magazi ne of the n ational ffa orga nization | June 2 011
Janna Oxford builds
and sells custom plaques, podiums and signs
tips for a healthier, greener lifestyle
Create a profile. Add friends. Start a group. Voice your opinions. www.ffa.org/ffanation
Volume 58 Number 5
The magazine of the National FFA Organization
editor associate editor content coordinator FFa Publications manager FFa communications Proofreading manager contributing writer media Technology director senior graphic designers media Technology analysts Photography director senior Photographers staff Photographers information Technology director web designer color imaging Technician integrated media manager controller sales support manager executive secretary ad Production manager ad Traffic assistants accounting distribution director marketing creative director executive Vice President sr. V.P./sales sr. V.P./operations V.P./external communications V.P./Visual content V.P./content operations
Kim Newsom holmberg jessy yaNcey blair Thomas julie woodard KrisTy meyer raVeN PeTTy jessica moZo chrisTiNa cardeN jaNiNe marylaNd, Kris seXToN, ViKKi williams c haNdra bradshaw, laNce coNZeTT, michele Niccore, marcus sNyder jeFFrey s. oTTo jeFF adKiNs, briaN mccord Todd beNNeTT, aNToNy boshier yaNcey boNd richard sTeVeNs alisoN huNTer Tori hughes chris dudley ciNdy hall KrisTy duNcaN KaTie middeNdorF KrysTiN lemmoN, PaTricia moisaN diaNa guZmaN, maria mcFarlaNd, shelly miller, lisa oweNs gary smiTh KeiTh harris ray laNgeN Todd PoTTer, carla ThurmaN casey hesTer Teree caruThers marK ForesTer NaTasha loreNs
6 cover story 12
2 x 4 x 10 11 x 17 x 18 20
Businesswoman By Design
F or advertising information, contact Tori hughes, (800) 333-8842, ext. 281, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. 2010-2011 National FFA Officers riley PageTT, oK laNdaN schaFFerT, co TiFFaNy rogers, mi wyaTT dejoNg, so james FlaTT, TN shaNNoN Norris, Nm National FFA Staff sTeVe browN charles browNe dwighT armsTroNg marioN FleTcher marK caVell, rob cooPer, dale crabTree, bill FleeT, jaNeT maloNey, KeNT schescKe, VicKi seTTle, lee aNNe shiller, ToNy small, bill sTagg, will waidelich President secretary eastern region Vice President central region Vice President southern region Vice President western region Vice President interim National FFa advisor interim executive secretary chief executive officer National Treasurer division directors
Janna Oxford builds and sells custom plaques, podiums and signs.
World Change Agents
FFA GO: Africa program takes college-age members on the journey of a lifetime.
Read news, jokes and more.
Meet members from across the country.
National FFA Board of Directors – Members sTeVe browN chair, usde, Va charles browNe secretary, usde, Va marioN FleTcher Treasurer, state supervisor, ar jim barbee state supervisor, NV wilbur chaNcellor state supervisor, ms KeiTh coX FFa executive secretary/usde, sc alice dubois business representative/usde, la jeFF hicKeN state supervisor, wi curT lucas state supervisor, Ky briaN e. myers associate Professor/usde, Fl johN raKesTraw business representative/usde, co Subscription Information: FFA New Horizons (issN 1069-806X) is published Feb., april, june, aug., oct. and dec. by the National FFa organization, 6060 FFa drive, indianapolis, iN 46268-0960. Publisher assumes no responsibility for return of unsolicited manuscripts, art or any other unsolicited materials. For subscription information contact: FFA New Horizons subscription services, (317) 802-4235 or e-mail email@example.com. Periodical postage rate is paid at indianapolis, ind., and additional mail offices. Postmaster: Please send address changes to FFA New Horizons, P.o. box 68960, indianapolis, iN 46268-0960.
National Officer Q & A
Meet Eastern Region Vice President Tiffany Rogers.
National Officer Q & A
Meet Central Region Vice President Wyatt DeJong.
Live a greener, healthier lifestyle.
Incorporate sustainable practices in your SAE.
copyright© 2011 by the National FFa organization and journal communications inc. The National FFa organization is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.
Please recycle this magazine
Personalize your own FFA apparel.
On the Cover Janna Oxford, Cloverdale, Ind. Photo By Todd Bennett
What did the pig say at the beach on a hot summer’s day? I’m bacon! What do you get when you cross a parrot and a centipede? A walkie-talkie! What did the hamburger name its baby? Patty
The Idea Farm
At Lone Pine High School, an FFA member casually suggested that the chapter should get a llama for its school farm. The first time he mentioned it, everyone laughed. But the second time, they all began to agree with his idea. A few months later, Kenny the llama came to live on this California chapter’s farm, and it was just the beginning. Currently, the school farm is home to Kenny the llama, Stanley the alpaca, Layla the donkey, four goats, three miniature horses, two cats and chickens. Built on the ideas of the FFA chapter members, the school also has 20 fruit trees, a seasonal livestock unit and two gardens. Lone Pine FFA members are always coming up with ideas and then trying them out to see what happens.
Three cousins from three different schools recently competed in three separate events at the Texas FFA State LDE competition. Betsy James, a junior at Katy High School, competed in public relations. Shelby James, a freshman at George West High School, competed in FFA Creed speaking. And Leighton James, a senior at Tuloso Midway High School, participated in job interview.
Justin Brands has been supporting FFA since 1998, through scholarships and special FFA boot lines. When a pair of FFA boots is sold, Justin donates $5 to FFA. Learn more from Lisa Lankes, vice president of communications, licensing and social media for Justin Brands, Inc. Why does the company feel it’s important to support FFA? It is an opportunity to support young men and women who will be the bedrocks of their communities and the leaders of this country. Justin Brands is honored to be part of an organization that teaches the value of principles and character. We are always looking for new ways to grow our partnership with FFA, and we hope to introduce some exciting new programs and products in the coming years. What’s new for Justin Brands in 2011? This year, Justin Boots is adding new performance styles to the Justin Bent Rail Collection. While maintaining the appealing look of a traditional outsole, select styles will feature a new rubber outsole to enhance performance, flexibility and durability.
PhoTo courTesy oF jusTiN braNds
Proud to Support FFA: Justin Brands
Going Once, Going Twice, Sold!
One thousand people, eight states and more than $800,000 worth of equipment sold. That was a successful equipment consignment auction for the Peotone FFA chapter in Illinois. For the fourth year in a row, Peotone FFA members have been able to bring in equipment from retirement sales, estate sales, liquidation sales and some foreclosure sales, through the help of local community supporters. On the day of the sale, members help load and unload equipment and run concession stands. Some members even help with auctioneering. This year, the chapter received more than $20,000 from the event.
An Experimental Success
In February, 12 students from the Anthony Wayne FFA chapter in Ohio competed in the Pettisville Local Science Fair. Last September, students in the school’s Ag Science I and II classes brainstormed agriculture research topics and then designed their own experiments based on these topics. They conducted their research at home or at school, then interpreted the results and wrote technical research papers and built display boards. Seven of the 12 students who participated received superior ratings, the highest awards given, at the science fair. All 12 students will compete with their projects again at the Ohio FFA Agriscience Fair.
Keep us informed! This is your chance to be a part of FFA New Horizons. send us a short article about your latest chapter activities, awards you’ve received or even your involvement outside FFa. be sure to include a high-quality color photo and your contact information. want an easy way to send your story? Visit ffanation.ffa.org and click on Contact us. or, send to: FFA New Horizons P.o. box 68960 indianapolis, iN 46268 firstname.lastname@example.org
Win a Pair of Wrangler Jeans
wrangler, the sponsor of FFa Faces, will award a pair of jeans to featured members. Nominate yourself to be considered for FFa Faces by following the steps below. Questions? E-mail email@example.com.
Visit www.ffafaces.com and click on Register. You can nominate yourself or another current FFA member.
Fill out the form to tell us about you – your FFA involvement, school activities, future plans and more.
Find a great photo of yourself – head and shoulders photos work best – and upload it as part of the nomination form.
Chapter: Bullard FFA
Chapter: Beebe FFA
Kolton, a sophomore, was awarded chapter star greenhand last year and has started a supervised agricultural experience (sae) program in swine. he raised a duroc for the houston livestock show last year and says it was a great experience in learning responsibility. it also sparked his career interest, and he hopes to become a veterinarian one day.
danielle says she is fairly new to the FFa organization, but she has enjoyed her experiences so far. besides FFa, she is involved with her school’s library club and dance team. she also enjoys hunting, fishing and spending time outdoors. danielle hopes to become president of her FFa chapter, and her career goal is to work with children and animals.
Chapter: York FFA
Chapter: Seminole Vo-Ed FFA
henry, a junior, has participated in the soil judging and livestock evaluation career development events (cde), and he was the high individual in the state cde for livestock last year. he also raises cattle and swine for his sae, and in the summers, grows produce to sell through the farmers’ market. after high school, henry hopes to attend clemson university.
This high school senior currently serves as her chapter’s president and has participated in nearly everything FFa has to offer. her sae is devoted to swine and steers, and she has competed in the parliamentary procedure and livestock evaluation cdes. besides her FFa involvement, lindsey enjoys dancing competitively and rides horses.
Chapter: Colfax FFA
Chapter: Chester FFA
Kyle, a senior, has won state titles in the rituals, FFa creed and job interview cdes, and placed sixth in the national FFa creed cde. he serves as his chapter’s president and district FFa president, and shows a pig each year for his county fair. Kyle is the valedictorian of his class and is also actively involved with the National honor society.
brittany says one of her favorite FFa experiences was attending the state FFa convention last year, where she was inspired by the keynote speakers and met many new friends. brittany also served as a delegate for her FFa chapter. This high school junior says she has learned a lot during her FFa membership, and now hopes to become a state FFa officer one day.
JANNA OxFOrD builds and sells
custom plaques, podiums and signs
in the fall. But the idea for Barnyard Designs came about in 2006 while she was a member of the Cloverdale, Ind. FFA chapter. “I had a sheep production placement SAE (supervised agricultural experience program), but I decided it was time for something new,” Janna recalls. “I needed a new SAE avenue.” It was Janna’s father who suggested she use the Shopbot Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Router that he had in his wood shop to carve designs into wood products to sell. “I thought it was a ridiculous idea and that no one would even think about buying the products,” Janna says. “But I found out I was wrong.” Janna took that ridiculous idea and turned it into a small business, and soon she was learning about marketing and management and how to run the tools in her father’s shop. “I cut the wood, run the CNC Router to carve the wood, sand, paint, stain, construct and finish products,” Janna says. “And then I print invoices and use Excel spreadsheets to track sales.” Janna follows each project from start to finish, from taking the order until the last coat of
Story by Blair Thomas Photography by Todd Bennett
anna Oxford wears many hats. For her business, Barnyard Designs, she is one part supply purchaser, one part designer, one part builder, one part marketer, one part sales analyst and all parts businesswoman. She has to be. Janna is the sole owner and operator of a woodworking business that builds and sells custom plaques, podiums and signs to FFA chapters and small businesses across her home state of Indiana. Today, Janna is finishing up her year of service as the Indiana FFA treasurer and will begin her sophomore year at Purdue University
Janna creates all her products herself, including drawing up the design, carving the wood using specialized equipment, sanding and sealing the product, and then painting it to the customer’s specifications. She says she enjoys knowing that she created each product, from start to finish, all by herself.
finish seals the final product. Her process starts with drawing up the design using Artcam Pro software, selecting a router bit for the Shopbot and generating its tool path. Once the design is transferred from the computer and into the CNC Router, Janna says it’s time to start cutting. She then aligns and mounts the carving material to the router and the machine is ready to carve the design. After the design is carved, Janna sands and seals the product and then paints it according to the customer’s specifications. Janna makes plaques, podiums and signs out of wood and Plexiglas materials. She has permission to use the FFA emblem on products that she sells within Indiana, and a lot of her products are purchased by FFA chapters throughout the state or by individuals involved with FFA. “I send and hand out brochures, business cards and just use word of mouth,” Janna says of her marketing strategies. She also
hopes to build a website to continue to grow her business. Janna plans to keep Barnyard Designs going while she continues to pursue her degree in agriculture education from Purdue. The money generated from the business helps pay for her school. And while Janna will complete her term as Indiana FFA treasurer
this summer, she says her experience with FFA has been the time of her life. “FFA has taught me so many things and given me the experience of a lifetime,” Janna says. “From leadership to responsibility, from time management to building friendships, and from strengthening my passion to never giving up.”
Some of Janna’s creations have incorporated a bit of history in them. “I’ve used barnwood we have from tearing down an old barn or any that’s given to me,” she says. “The old barnwood adds a cool effect to some of my products.” So far, Janna has made some signs and other items for her family to use around the house, but she sees it as an opportunity to expand her business even more – in a highly sustainable, earth-friendly way.
FFA National Officer
family’s agricultural roots. My great grandfather owned draft horses and used them to plow the fields. It was so cool for me to know that every time I worked with my horses, I was living out a tradition. I think the neatest part of this SAE is that it allows members to really appreciate one of the foundations of early American agriculture – a time when farm work was done from horseback or behind a horse-drawn plow.
You’ve been really involved in promoting agricultural awareness in elementary schools. What types of information did you include in your presentations?
This michigan native loves rollercoasters and playing catchPhrase. learn more about her favorite things. Food: sushi Smell: clean laundry Vacation spot: New york city Animal: draft horses and zebras FFA memory: attending FFa leadership camp Personal hero: her grandma, dorothy Frost Sport to watch: hockey
The program I developed for this was called Agriculture M.A.T.T.E.R.S. (Agriculture Materials Attributed To Teaching Elementary students Rural Significance). It focused on teaching students the importance of agriculture and the role it plays in their everyday lives.
National FFA Eastern region Vice President
What suggestions do you have for FFA chapters interested in starting an ag awareness campaign with elementary school children? Keep it active and fun! I found that elementary school students learn best when they are fully engaged, whether it’s with pictures, dancing, performing skits or doing crafts. Activities like these keep them interested and also make it more fun for you.
Growing up on a small farm in Niles, Mich., Tiffany Rogers developed quite an interest in livestock. She has raised sheep, swine, poultry and beef cattle each year for the fair, and, along with her parents and sister, raise Percheron draft horses. When Tiffany joined the Cassopolis FFA chapter in the seventh grade, her horse project quickly became her supervised agricultural experience (SAE) program.
This issue focuses on sustainability. What are some ways you see FFA members incorporating this important topic into their FFA activities?
Why do you think horse production is such a good SAE for FFA members? For me, horse production was different from any other potential SAE because it really let me get in touch with my
Members are learning what it means to be sustainable – being able to provide for the needs of the present without compromising that ability in the future. Students are really embracing this concept through their SAEs as they look into new paths of technologies, conservation practices, diversity of resources and how this will all come into play with our world’s growing population.
National FFA Central region Vice President
Self-described as “a guy who loves life and people,” Wyatt DeJong seems like a perfect fit for a national FFA office. This South Dakota native is definitely living it up this year as he meets FFA members, alumni, supporters and sponsors across the country while serving as the National FFA Central Region Vice President. When not inspiring FFA members, Wyatt enjoys heading home to his family’s 7,000-acre cattle ranch in Western South Dakota.
What was it like growing up on such a large cattle ranch?
Western South Dakota requires quite a bit more land to raise cattle so the ranches are bigger. It was cool growing up where we had no cell phone service, few neighbors and so much country to see. Something about riding a horse across the hills is humbling and inspiring. While in high school, how did you maintain your FFA motivation and excitement throughout the summer? During the summer, I spent many hours working on my supervised agricultural experience (SAE) program of raising and showing cattle. Until my junior year, my main FFA focus was centered on the show ring during the summer, but then I began participating in FFA conferences that really challenged and encouraged me.
How do you define sustainability, as it relates to agriculture, and what are some of the things you’ve seen agriculturists doing to reduce their impact on the environment? I think “sustainability” in agriculture has three main parts. First, it must be focused on land improvement. Second, it must produce enough food for people to eat. Third, it must be profitable for the farmers who raise the food.
a cattleman through and through, wyatt’s favorite place to vacation is at a cattle show, and his favorite smell is sullivan’s Kleen sheen (a show cattle grooming spray). learn more about wyatt’s favorites: Food: cheeseburger soup with fry bread Movie: The Emperor’s New Groove Singer/group: matthew west & Tenth avenue North Color: green Season: Fall Game: catchPhrase FFA memory: First national FFa convention Hobby: doing puzzles Cartoon: Scooby Doo Sport: basketball
What has been your favorite experience as a national FFA officer so far?
National FFA Week in North Carolina: It was epic! I was able to meet some new people and create great friendships. National FFA Week showed me once again that people are incredible and that members use creative ways to make a difference. This year, FFA has shown me to find the value in each person and to learn something new each day.
FFA GO: AFrICA program
takes collegiate members on the journey of a lifetime
Story by Jessica Mozo
degradation. He is very interested in improving the lives of others, and he made a commitment to fund a five-year program that will take FFA members out of the U.S. and turn them into change agents in the world.” With support from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, FFA launched a pilot program in August 2010, taking six college-age FFA members and one adult educator on an all-expense-paid trip to Zambia. The team spent three weeks working and studying with an enterprise called COMACO, or Community Markets for Conservation. “COMACO is a cooperative for African farmers to improve their production techniques, help them be better stewards of the land and reduce their reliance on poaching,” Stagg says. The six participants – Jake Chilcoat, Wyatt DeJong, Caleb Dodd, Catharine Kuber, Austin Larrowe and Laura Stump – along with Dr. Brad Leger, a professor at Louisiana State University, traveled to Mfuwe, Zambia and worked in teams to help COMACO staff members gather data and survey local farmers about challenges they were facing and how well the COMACO model of sustainable agriculture and conservation was working. “When Zambian farmers sign on to the COMACO model, they can get seed free as long as they use it to positively impact the environment,” says Marilyn Ross, director of Foundation Relations for the National FFA Foundation. “Before COMACO, farmers were unable to support their families on what they produced, so they were poaching wild animals and selling them. They used snares to trap animals,
f three weeks in the jungles of Africa sounds like your kind of adventure, listen up. The National FFA Organization kicked off a new program in 2010 called FFA Global Outreach: Africa to educate collegiate members about agriculture outside the United States, and organizers plan to make it an annual opportunity. “FFA has a number of programs that give students opportunities to travel outside the country, but we needed more opportunities to promote a broader understanding of the world around us and how agriculture fits into it,” says Bill Stagg, director of Strategic Communications for the National FFA Organization. “At the 2009 National FFA Convention, Mr. Howard G. Buffett made a presentation about his experiences traveling the world and observing hunger, poverty and environmental
Laura Stump and Jake Chilcoat were two of six collegiate FFA members who traveled to Zambia in summer 2010 as part of the FFA GO: Africa program.
but when they were given seed, they understood they had to give up poaching and turn in their snares.” Many farmers have been able to increase their crop production significantly using the COMACO model of sustainable agriculture techniques, and they are selling their excess produce. “They’re producing vegetables they didn’t even have before,” Ross says. “And if a family’s monthly protein was one chicken before, they’ve now doubled or tripled that nutrition source.” Laura Stump, a student at the University of Arizona, says the FFA GO: Africa program put her “on the front lines of fighting poverty in Zambia.” “Every day, my partner Jake and I traveled to remote villages – sometimes hours in the back of a truck – to meet farmer constituents of COMACO,” Laura says. “Each meeting was a unique opportunity to sit down and learn about the lives and farming practices of people we met. They were very generous with their stories. I was moved to hear about how many of them have benefited from altering their farming practices according to what COMACO taught them.” Laura and Jake were assigned to interview poultry farmers and beekeepers. “We interviewed about 300 farmers in all. I felt like I got to know them and develop a bond,” Jake says. “Even though we have very different lives, it was touching to see how much we have in common. They want the same things we do: to better themselves, to eat and
Clockwise from top left: The entire “Z team” who traveled to Zambia in summer 2010; Catharine Kuber and a local farmer display his crop successes; Austin Larrowe with a group of children; local farmers discuss their farms with the FFA team; Howard G. Buffett, whose foundation supports the FFA GO: Africa program; Dr. Brad Leger, Caleb Dodd and Wyatt DeJong take a break from their field work.
thrive, for their kids to be happy.” At the end of the trip, participants prepared case studies of their findings and presented them to COMACO staff members, who will use the reports to help COMACO better serve Zambian farmers. The team from FFA didn’t have to spend the whole trip working – they also went on a safari and saw elephants, hippos, impalas, kudus, giraffes and baboons in the wild. “We saw some incredible animals; it was mind-blowing,” Jake says. “But my favorite part of the trip was definitely interacting with the villagers.” Jake is majoring in agricultural leadership at Oklahoma State University and plans to pursue a career in agricultural sustainability abroad. Laura is studying animal science and hopes to land a career in international development after college. “Students should apply for this program not only because it’s a great adventure, but also because it offers exposure that will make you a well-rounded agriculturalist,” Laura says. “I believe those involved in food production are a critical resource in reducing poverty and social injustice around the world. Even for those who’d rather stay home than travel abroad, being involved in agriculture brings with it significant responsibility; we must be aware of how our policies affect others abroad. The FFA GO: Africa program is a good starting point for building that critical understanding.”
Laura Stump learns to play an African instrument. The FFA GO: Africa participants enjoyed learning about the Zambian culture and seeing the unique wildlife all around them.
Interested in getting a taste of global agriculture? The FFA GO: Africa program is open to college-age members only. The 2011 trip takes place this summer, and the destination is rwanda. The application process for the 2012 FFA GO: Africa program will begin in early 2012. For the latest details, visit www.ffa.org/Programs/Global/GoAfrica. You can read more about the 2010 trip in the participants’ own words on the National FFA Blog at ffa.org. Click on August 2010 in the archives.
FFA healthy lifestyles
Here’s to Your
Check out these tips for a healthier, GrEENEr lifestyle
hese days, the “go green” trend is everywhere you look – from stores encouraging reusable shopping bags to water bottles changing shape to use less plastic. Summer is a great time to commit to a greener, more environmentally conscious lifestyle, partly because it’s the perfect time to get outdoors. Best of all, green living is healthy living, so you’ll get in shape while reducing your carbon footprint. Read on for ways to improve your health while embracing Mother Earth. Small changes in your daily life that don’t seem to matter much add up to major improvements for your health and our environment.
USE A REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE. Only about 25 percent of Americans recycle their plastic water bottles, which means millions of them end up in landfills and rivers every year. Consider using a filtering water pitcher instead of buying bottled water. TAkE THE STAiRS. If you can, skip the elevator and opt for the stairs. You’ll burn calories and save the energy elevators require to transport people up and down in buildings.
GET A REUSABLE LUNCHBOx. If you bring your lunch to school, don’t brown bag it – save paper by packing it in a lunchbox or lunch bag. Go even further by reusing plastic containers from foods such as yogurt and cream cheese.
START A BACkYARD GARDEN. Gardening is a super form of exercise, and you’ll get homegrown, chemical-free fruits and vegetables for your hard work. If it sounds intimidating, start with something easy to grow, such as tomatoes or squash.
WALk, BikE OR CARPOOL. If you (or your parents) can leave the car at home, you’ll save gas, eliminate emissions from your car and get some exercise outdoors.
PLANT TREES. Gather your family or FFA chapter for a day of tree planting. Trees fight global warming by drawing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. They also create shade and add beauty to parks and neighborhoods.
SHOP YOUR LOCAL FARmERS mARkET. Choosing local foods supports farmers near you and saves resources spent on long-distance shipping. Plus, you’ll find lots of healthy fruits and vegetables picked that same day. – Jessica Mozo
www.FFA.Org/FFANATiON New HOrizONs
FFA how to
Be sustainable in your sAe
Four ways to be SuSTAINABlE
IN YOur SAE
o matter what you’ve chosen to do for your supervised agricultural experience (SAE) program, there are opportunities every day to consider how your actions positively or negatively affect the world around you. “We have students in the livestock production world,
but we also have students who work in retail, wholesale and urban settings; it’s not just farming,” says Jim Armbruster, senior relationship specialist for the National FFA Organization’s convention and events management division. “The SAE program is made up of many enterprises. Students might
FFA members who raise animals should learn more about how sustainability affects their SAEs. PhoTo by jeFFrey s. oTTo
produce fiber or timber, and others might be doing things from their home or apartment in an urban setting. The idea is for all of us to think more green and reduce energy use – things like changing out light bulbs, fixing leaky faucets and building home gardens.” Agriculturalists across the nation are already paying close attention to how their practices affect the environment. “American agriculturalists are doing a great job of maintaining the quality of agriculture production while being sustainable and conserving resources,” Armbruster says. “If they’re paying $300 a ton for fertilizer, you can bet they’re not wasting much. When we talk about reducing, reusing and recycling, a lot of agriculturalists are already doing it.” Even on a small scale, FFA members can do the same. For example, members raising animals, whether livestock or dogs and cats, should pay attention to animal waste and where it goes. The U.S. Department of Agriculture even has a step-by-step guide for pet owners to compost dog waste. “Dog manure is just as high in nitrates as pig manure,” Armbruster
says. “It may sound gross, but students can dispose of it by starting a backyard compost pile.” Whether your SAE finds you plowing fields or sitting in front of a computer, check out these other ways to embrace sustainability.
the oil in your car, take used oil to an oil collection facility instead of dumping it in the trash. CHOOSE GREEN. From herbicides plant growers use to cleaning products used in the home, opt for natural ingredients. Start by looking under your kitchen or bathroom sink. Read the labels of cleaners and buy materials with less toxicity to the environment.
What is Sustainability, Anyway?
These days, sustainability is quite the buzz word. Know what it means, especially as it relates to agriculture? We polled many of you through Facebook, Twitter and FFA Nation, and here were some of the best definitions we got. “Promoting modern agricultural practices in a practical way that will ensure a future in agriculture for future generations at an economically feasible price.” “using the land and natural resources to grow food or fiber in the most profitable way that has the least waste and lowest environmental impact.” “My vision of sustainable agriculture is a combination of new and old agricultural practices that come together to conserve more, reduce dependency on nonrenewable sources, efficiently satisfy demand and promotes stewardship of natural sources.” “The use of natural resources for our purposes which is efficient and doesn’t rapidly deplete energies; it gives as much as it takes.”
POWER DOWN. Turn your computer and other electronics off while not in use and before you go to bed. You may not think you can have much impact on the world if you turn off your computer at night, but if everybody in the U.S. is doing it, that’s a massive amount of energy saved. CLEAN UP WASTE. There are lots of do’s and don’ts when it comes to throwing things away. If you’re cleaning out a storage shed, take old cans of paint to the proper hazardous waste facility. Likewise, if you’re changing
WASTE NOT, WANT NOT. There’s a lot of truth to the old adage that simply means the less we waste, the more we have. Whether it’s turning off the water while you brush your teeth or printing on both sides of paper before tossing it in the recycling bin, develop a mindset of conservation, and everyone benefits. – Jessica Mozo
We also asked FFA members what they would like to learn more about, related to sustainability in agriculture. Your responses:
Sustainable farming practices for crops and plants Environmental efforts by livestock producers Renewable power resources like wind energy or alternative fuels Conserving water Agriculture companies’ commitment to sustainability Carbon footprints
50 44 35 35 34 16
10 20 30 40 50
Visit FFA Nation (www.ffa.org/ffanation) and click on this story for more findings from our Sustainability in Agriculture survey.
On the web
The FFA Online Experience
Prep for the national FFa convention, design a T-shirt and more
Custom FFA Gear – Just For You! “I Believe” in the 84th National FFA Convention
Mark your calendars for the 84th National FFA Convention, October 19-22, 2011, in Indianapolis. And this year’s theme (just announced!) is “I Believe.” A common phrase to all FFA members and alumni, “I Believe” starts each paragraph of the FFA Creed and represents the FFA brand well. Make plans now to attend the national FFA convention this fall to learn more about how you can believe in FFA. Visit www.ffa.org/convention for more details about the convention. Personalize your FFA look through the FFA Design Studio. The easy-to-use website on Shop FFA (shop.ffa.org) allows you to customize your FFA tees and sweatshirts. Simply choose from four garment styles, hundreds of design elements and multiple colors, then start designing! These are great for chapter or team shirts, or maybe even gifts for sponsors and supporters. Go start designing your next great shirt now!
A Blog to Remember
Keep up with the national FFA officers’ journeys through the National FFA blog, found at ffa.org. In addition to the officers’ personal accounts of their experiences, you can read interesting stories about other FFA members and chapters from across the country. Visit ffa.org and click on the blogs button on the left side of the webpage to read the latest stories and subscribe to future posts.
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FFA New Horizons state inserts keep YOU connected to what’s going on in your state or others. • State FFA news and achievements • FFA member profiles • Career information • Meet state FFA officers To learn about creating a state insert for your FFA association, contact Kim Newsom at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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ILLINOIS ASSOCIATION FFA FFA in the Spotlight
Meet Your 2010-2011 Illinois State FFA Vice President, Jake Ekstrand | E
212 Conference | D
State CDE Results | B
Officers’ Tracks | H
Check out our
What’s InsIde thIs Issue
State CDE Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B FFA Week . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C 212 Conference . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D Meet Jake Ekstrand, State Vice President . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . E 83rd Illinois State FFA Convention Highlights . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F
83rd Illinois State FFA Convention Schedule . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . G Officers’ Tracks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . H
State CDE Results Title holder
State Job Interview CDE
• Michaela Frailey, Hardin County • Ben Martens, Orion • Molly Christ, Elmwood • Trent Taber, Geneseo • Johnny Eloe, Shelbyville • Meghan Gleason, Mahomet-Seymour • Megan Frizzell, Pontiac • Nikki Kargol, Midland • Kevin Eastman, Farmington • Ellyne Vance, Eureka
State Meats Evaluation CDE
• Prairie Central • Seneca • Newton
Top 10 Individuals:
• Thomas Downey, Midland • Jason Wenger, Prairie Central • Michael Probst, Newton • Shanna Slagel, Prairie Central • Nate Coughlin, Seneca • Abram Zehr, Prairie Central • Zackery Martin, Byron • Naomi Knapp, Prairie Central • Jessica Hummel, Clifton Central • Jake Wilken, Clifton Central
• Laura Debaillie, Orion • Layla Bond, Galatia • Jaci Jenkins, Hardin County • Kali Hartzold, Olympia • Silver Mitchell, Midland • Monica Janssen, Southeastern • Logan Johnson, Heyworth • Kailyne Palmer, Eastland • Cody Coulter, Elmwood • Taylor Blickhan, Unity
State Poultry CDE
• Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Prairie Central • Shelbyville • Greenville
OTO FINISH HERE Top 5 Teams:
• Midland • Bushnell-Prairie City • Mt. Vernon • Seneca • Cisne
State Ag Issues CDE
Top 10 Individuals:
• Monica Jarboe, Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Erin Lemley, Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Jennifer Hustedt, Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Hannah Teske, Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Paxton Johnson, Paxton-Buckley-Loda • Matthew Durbin, Shelbyville • Stacie Cowman, East Richland • Wil Cagley, Prairie Central • Carolina Jimenez, Urbana • Jordan Willeford, Greenville
B • ILLINOIS FFA B • ILLINOIS FFA
National FFA Week
On February 21, Morgan attended the Heartland FFA Alumni Auction at Normal West Community High School. Morgan had fun hanging out with FFA members and enjoyed a great meal. It was a wonderful way to kick off FFA Week!
FFA members at the Heartland FFA Alumni Auction!
Tuscola FFA Visit – On
Thursday, February 17 John traveled to the Tuscola FFA Chapter to help kick off their FFA week by competing in a cook off against FCCLA! This was a great way to get the word out about this year’s FFA week theme “Infinite Potential”.
John Edgar with Tuscola FFA members and advisor during their FFA vs. FCCLA cook off!
Cuba Petting Zoo – On Thursday, February 17 Jake and Cody visited the Cuba FFA
Chapter. During their visit they socialized with FFA members and informed elementary students about the animals they were visiting.
Radio Interviews – Throughout
FFA week the Major State Officers spent time participating in radio interviews around the state. This was a wonderful way to get the word out about FFA week! The majors also did radio spots at the Illinois Farm Bureau building in Bloomington before FFA week.
ILLINOIS FFA • C
TitleConference 212 holder
Cody and Jeff headed south to Collinsville, Illinois for the Southern 212 Degrees Conference, while John, Jake and Morgan traveled up north for the Northern 212 Degrees Conference. 212 Degrees is a conference held every year for freshman and sophomore FFA members. 212 is that first real conference where students are able to step out of their comfort zone, learn the basics of leadership and meet a ton of new friends from all over the state. More than 600 FFA members total attended! Thank you to all the FFA members who attended.
OTO FINISH HERE
D • ILLINOIS FFA D • ILLINOIS FFA
Meet Jake Ekstrand, State FFA Vice President
“Make the most of life, enjoy it while you can. “Take what is given to you ” and make it your best. These were a few things I was told going through ” high school, and I tried my best to take them to heart. I also tried to enjoy myself while making life better for the people around me. Looking back at it all, I like to think I had it pretty good. I knew where I wanted to go, and I took steps to reach that place. I truly enjoyed all the times that I spent with my friends, and we had a great time with whatever we did. There was never a dull moment. One thing I did enjoy more than all the down time I had with my friends was all the time I spent with the FFA. I just couldn’t get enough of it. I remember attending my first CDE. It was agronomy, which was something I was looking into as a career. I have met many people who are very knowledgeable in the field, so I wanted to make my point that I also had an abundance of knowledge with this area. I definitely was one of the youngest members at the contest, competing against mostly upperclassmen. I didn’t think there was much hope for me to be competitive and come in towards the top. By coming in towards the top, I would have moved onto the section level, but that didn’t mean much to me because I was there to learn and further my knowledge. Later that night when results were being announced, the top 10 would be able to move onto the section level and the top five would make up the team to represent my chapter. I waited patiently to see how I did. The results started from placing 10th and down to the winner. The first five had been called and I was starting to think there was no hope for me to move on, so I started thinking that I would have to work harder the next time. To my surprise my name had been called as the second place winner! So this meant that I would move onto the section level and represent myself and my chapter. I spent the next few weeks preparing for the section competition. The day of the competition came and I performed very well because I was looking forward to competing at the state level. The scores had come back and I had done extremely well, but I realized that one of my senior teammates had just missed the cut for state. I knew that his heart was set on competing at the state level. He had been working and putting everything he had into competing for state for four years, and I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity at such a young age. I thought to myself that I was satisfied enough with my own accomplishments, and I wanted him to have the opportunity to represent our chapter at state. I had no worries about him doing well, and he was very grateful. It made me realize that there is more to life than just getting what I want. Putting others before yourself can be just as or even more rewarding than receiving the recognition yourself. Illinois Association FFA, it truly is a pleasure serving as your State Vice-President. I hope my words can be useful and you can make the most of your time spent in the FFA. I hope that your experiences can be just as rewarding for you as my experiences have been to me.
ILLINOIS FFA • E
83rd Illinois State Convention
Does your team-building and leadership skills need a lift? If so, visit the lower level of the convention center and attend the fun workshops!
After an exciting first day at convention, put on your boots and come to the State Convention Dance! More than 1,000 FFA members will be getting their groove on at the State Fairgrounds on Tuesday evening. Members, remind your FFA advisors to purchase dance tickets in advance!
Don’t forget to find your way to the Career Show in the lower level of the convention center. You will have the chance to explore career opportunities and buy some FFA merchandise!
Between sessions, make sure to see the wonderful capital city! Visit the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum, splash around at Knight’s Action Park or try the Springfield special, a horse shoe!
Why not come a little early? After all, the early bird gets the worm! If you come a half-hour early to each session you can win prizes, laugh with other members, participate in games and even get a better seat for the session! It’s a great way to build excitement for convention!
U of I freshman captUres natIonal ffa’s hIghest honor In ag commUnIcatIons
University of Illinois freshman Amelia Martens took home the coveted title of 2010 National Agricultural Communications Proficiency Award Winner at the 83rd National FFA Convention in Indianapolis. “I knew I had done my best,” said Amelia Martens of the Orion FFA Chapter in Illinois. “But it was incredible to hear my name announced as the winner.” In her project, she used her knack with words to share the positive stories in agriculture with the public. She has written material for local and state agricultural publications, her FFA chapter’s website and her school’s Student Food Drive blog. In 2009 alone, she wrote 40 articles for multiple outlets. She even shadowed long-time farm broadcaster Orion Samuelson. Martens said she will continue to advocate for agriculture and looks forward to completing her bachelor’s degree in agricultural communications and possibly agricultural education leadership, too. Katie Abrams, U of I Charles H. Sandage Department of Advertising visiting assistant professor for the agricultural communications program, said, “It’s impressive to see Amelia start out as a freshman with such a diverse communications portfolio. She has already set a precedent for success, and now it’s up to us at the U of I to help her get to the next level as an agricultural communicator.” Abrams said Martens serves as an excellent role model for future students interested in applying to agricultural communications programs across the country. “It’s exciting to have her here at the U of I,” Abrams said. “By the time she’s completed her degree, she’s going to be a stellar agricultural communicator — whether that leads her to law school, graduate school or into the industry, she’ll be ready for anything.” Martens plans to become involved in as many professional agricultural organizations as she can while in college. “Growing up on the family farm, agriculture has always played a large role in my life, and I want to give back in any way that I can by getting involved in these organizations,”she said. “In addition, I hope to gain valuable experience through internships with agricultural companies and by working within the College of ACES during the school year. There are so many networking opportunities — the opportunities are endless.” Upon graduation, Martens plans to attend law school and study agricultural law. She hopes to open her own law firm and do freelance work on the side. “In all that I do, I want to be an advocate and mediator in agriculture to share our story with those who may not know it so well,” she said. Digital photos available at: http://www.aces.uiuc.edu/news/ News_Photos/Martens News writer: Jennifer Shike 217-244-0888 Email: email@example.com
F • ILLINOIS FFA
83rd Illinois State Convention Schedule
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
8:00 a.m. 9:00 a.m. 10:00 a.m. 10:00 a.m. 11:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m. 12-5 p.m. 1:00 p.m. Registration Opens Agriscience Fair Registration Opens Agriculture Science Fair Essay Presentations FFA Band and Chorus first practice Usher Corps Orientation Press Corps Orientation – Behind North Risers Career Show Open general session #1 chair: John edgar, state ffa president **Delegate Seating by Sections**
(June 15, 2011 – Continued)
11:30 a.m. 12:30 p.m. 1:00 p.m. leadership luncheon Pre-Session general session #4 chair: cody gill, state ffa secretary
Proficiency Awards Part 1 Illinois FFA Alumni Executive Council Recognition FFA Talent Proficiency Awards Part 2 Introduction of Visiting State Associations State Officer Report Video Proficiency Awards Part 3 FFA Talent Proficiency Awards Part 4 N ational Officer Keynote – T iffany Rogers, Eastern Region Vice President Introduction of Candidates for 2011-2012 State Officer Team Closing Ceremonies Delegate Business session #1 (Immediately following session 1) 5:00 p.m. Illinois ffa foundation Dinner 6:00 p.m. 6:30 p.m. Pre-Session general session #2 chair: Jake ekstrand, state Vice president
GROWMARK Essay Contest Award Heritage Award Chapter President’s Award Section President’s Award Cooperative Award Retiring Address, Morgan Ott, State FFA Reporter Century Challenge Sweepstakes Award Past State Officer Recognition Sam Taylor Memorial Scholarship New and Re-chartered FFA Chapters Section FFA Membership Incentive National Chapter Award – Community Development Chapter Exhibits Recognition Impromptu Question for State Officer Candidates Closing Ceremonies Delegate session #2 (If necessary) 3:30 p.m. Past State Officer Reception 5:30 p.m. Delegate Election Session Speeches by State Officer Candidates Election of 2011-2012 State FFA Officers Delegate Reception 20 minutes after conclusion of elections
Presentation of FFA Creed American Degree Candidate Recognition American Star Candidates FFA Talent Proficiency Awards Part 5 FFA Band Illinois FFA Foundation Chairman’s Remarks Proficiency Awards Part 6 Pheasants Forever Recognition National Chapter Award – Student Development Retiring Address, Jeffrey Barnes, State FFA Treasurer Closing Ceremonies ffa Dance begins 20 minutes after conclusion of general session #2 at state ffa fairgrounds in the orr Building
Thursday, June 16, 2011
8:00 a.m. Pre-Session 8:30 a.m. general session #5 chair: Jeffrey Barnes, state ffa treasurer Scrapbook Awards Chapter Reporter’s Award Section Reporter’s Award State Career Development Winners Prepared Public Speaking Winner’s Recognition Section President’s Parent Recognition Major State Officer Parent Recognition National Chapter Award Gold, Silver, and Bronze by Section and Section Bankers Plaque Retiring Address, Jake Ekstrand, State FFA Vice President Closing Ceremonies 11:30 a.m. State FFA Degree Luncheon 12:30 p.m. Illinois FFA Talent Review 1:00 p.m. general session #6 chair: Jake ekstrand, state Vice president Stars Over Illinois Ceremony • Star in Agri-Science • Star in Agricultural Placement • Star in Agricultural Business • Star Farmer Retiring Address, John Edgar, State FFA President Honorary State Degree Ceremony FFA Alumni Raffle State FFA Degree Ceremony Installation of 2011-2012 Section Presidents Installation of 2011-2012 Major State Officers Closing Ceremonies
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
8:00 a.m. 8:30 a.m. Pre- Session general session #3 chair: morgan ott, state ffa reporter
Section President’s Advisor Recognition Major State Officer Advisor Recognition State Staff Recognition J.E. Hill Scholarship Retiring Advisor Recognition Retiring Address, Cody Gill, State FFA Secretary Agri-Entrepreneurship Award National Chapter Award – Chapter Development Agri-Science Student Award Ag Science Fair Award Keynote Speaker Closing Ceremonies
ILLINOIS FFA • G
212 Degrees Conference (Jan . 28-30, 2011)
More than 600 freshman and sophomore FFA members attended this year’s 212 Degrees Conference. John, Jake and Morgan attended 212 in Schaumburg; while Cody and Jeffrey traveled south to Collinsville for the weekend. The FFA members were able to meet new FFA members from around the state, learn leadership activities and still managed to have fun!
Illinois FFA Alumni Meeting and PAS Conference (Feb . 4-5, 2011)
The five Major State Officers attended the Alumni Annual Meeting and PAS Conference in Springfield on February 4-5. The officers delivered a welcome, helped with PAS contests and assisted in the FFA Alumni auction. The money raised from the auction will be put towards scholarships for FFA members.
Job Interview and Ag Issues CDE (Feb . 12, 2011)
Cody and Jeff attended the Job Interview and Ag Issues CDE on February 12 at Western Illinois University. They helped with the CDE, and had fun meeting with FFA members and talking about upcoming events!
Illinois Pork Expo (Feb . 15-16, 2011)/ Illinois Grain and Feed Expo (Feb . 20-21, 2011)
Jake and Jeff traveled to Peoria to handle the Illinois Foundation FFA booth at the Illinois Pork Expo. At the expo, Jake and Jeff talked with numerous sponsors of the Foundation, met producers and talked with friends. John and Jeff attended the Illinois Grain and Feed Expo to represent the Illinois FFA and talk with sponsors. This expo is held mainly for people who are involved in grain systems and feed operations.
H • ILLINOIS FFA