Wednesday, May 27, 2015

More than 1,100 FFA Members Learn About Agriculture, Leadership at FFA Convention

From Morrisville State College:

More than 1,100 high school students came to Morrisville State College earlier this month for the annual State FFA Convention.

While there, they learned about farm-grown biodiesel, made a fence out of pine logs, figured out how to wire a circuit, and had the chance to climb a 120-foot turbine tower. They also gained a better understanding about leadership, personal growth, career success and the agricultural industry.

Even more commanding than the blue corduroy jackets with gold lettering -- widely recognized FFA-member attire -- was the enthusiasm they brought to campus. Hailing from as far away as Arkansas, Utah, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Oregon, South Dakota, Vermont and Wisconsin, they came to share ideas and camaraderie and to learn more about agriculture. 
The convention, which helps the next generation of agricultural leaders reach their goals, featured a line-up of motivational and informational presentations. Students also had the opportunity to explore a career show, attend leadership and career workshops and view an array of exhibits.
“This convention was such a success thanks to so many people,” said Chip Ax, host site coordinator and Morrisville State College collegiate FFA adviser.

Morrisville State College gave them a ‘realistic college experience’ and showcased what Morrisville has to offer,” Ax said. “Morrisville State College was an incredible partner for our convention,” said Juleah Tolosky, NY FFA executive secretary. 
“From lodging and meals to real-life settings for career development events, workshops and tours, the facilities and support available to us made the convention an incredible experience.”
Benjamin Ballard, Morrisville's assistant professor of renewable energy, hosted a biodiesel workshop which allowed students to learn the process of extracting oil from locally grown sunflowers, test the oil and then make their own biodiesel.
A half-day workshop hosted by Philip Hofmeyer, assistant professor of renewable energy, provided information about tower climbing for small wind systems and the opportunity for participants to climb a 120-foot-tall turbine tower at the Morrisville State College Dairy Complex.
A. J. Fletcher, from the Cobleskill-Richmondville school district, learns about wiring at a career development contest held during the State FFA convention at Morrisville State College.
Others learned how to make their animals look better in the show ring with a seminar that gave them hands-on experience clipping live animals and even provided a top-line demonstration.
"It's been a great learning experience for me," said A.J. Fletcher, from the Cobleskill-Richmondville school district. "Today, I got to wire a 120-volt circuit and yesterday, I learned all about diesel motors and emissions. It's all so educational." 
Creed Ossont, 13, of Otselic Valley, was among those attending a tree climbing workshop presented by Rebecca Hargrave, assistant professor of environmental sciences. It's a little tricky," he said as he twisted rope into a knot that he planned to use later to climb a tree.

Many took advantage of the wide array of activities offered throughout the three-day event, including campus and industry tours, a performance by country artists, the Beadle Brothers, and competitions that tested their knowledge of subjects such as agricultural communications, veterinary science, agricultural issues, marketing plan and food science.
Speakers included Ryan Porter, inspirational author of “Make Your Own Lunch;” Victoria Maloch, National FFA secretary from Arkansas; and Tracee Schiebel, of Vernon, Miss Mohawk Valley 2015. 
Additional guests included state FFA officers from nine other states including Utah, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Oregon, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
There were numerous recreational opportunities including a Tractor U-Pull and additional activities like ice skating, a talent show, a career fair and an antique tractor exhibit. 
Most attendees earned their way competing at local, regional, and sub-state levels. The top students from the state convention will go on to represent New York and compete at the national competition. 

FFAs from the following New York schools participated in the convention:
Here are the New York school district FFA chapters that participated in the FFA Convention:
Albion High School
Alexandria Central School
Argyle Central School
Beaver River
Belleville Henderson Central School
Canton Central School
Career and Technical Center at Belmont
Carthage Central School
Cassadaga Valley Central
Cattaraugus-Little Valley
Cayuga Onondaga BOCES
Cazenovia Central School
Chateaugay Central School
CiTi -Center for Instruction,Technology & Innovation
Clymer Central School
Cobleskill-Richmondville High School
Fillmore Central School
Franklinville Central School
Genesee Valley
Gouverneur Central School
Granville Central High School
Greenville Central School District
Greenwich High School
Greater Southern Tier BOCES — Bush Campus
Hamilton Central School
Hartford Central School
Indian River High School
John Bowne High School
Lowville Academy and Central School
Madison Central School
Marcus Whitman
Medina Central School District
Moravia Junior-Senior High School
Northern Adirondack
Northwest Technical Center
Oppenheim-Ephratah-St. Johnsville Central Schools
Ormsby Educational Center
Otselic Valley Central School
Oxford Academy & Central School
Penn Yan Academy
Pine Plains
Randolph Central
Salem Central School
Schoharie Valley
Sharon Springs
Sherman Central School
Sidney Central Schools
South Jefferson High School
South Lewis High School
Southern Cayuga Central School
Springville-Griffith Institute
Stockbridge Valley
TST Career and Tech
Tully Central School
Unadilla Valley Central School
Warwick Valley
Wilson Tech at Huntington
Wilson Tech HHC FFA
Washington Saratoga Warren Hamilton Essex BOCES Southern Adirondack
WSWHE BOCES, F. Donald Myers Education Center

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