Friday, January 11, 2019

Review & Look Forward

First Six Months
Team: Being on the Team, Sami
I’ve been on many teams before: sports teams, chapter officer teams, student council and more. However, I have never been on one like I am on now. I live and work with my team, which has taught me a lot. I love the relationships I have built with my teammates. We can be serious and professional but we can also let loose and have fun. I am also going to be very honest, being on a team like this is not always easy. Disagreements may occur, but working through them has helped me and the team grow so much. Whether it was waking up early to water plants at the State Fair, orchestrating opening skits for conferences, or taking car rides to business and industry visits, it’s safe to say I have six best friends that I get to have this once in a lifetime experience with.

General Public: State Fair, Nathan
As we reflect on the last six months of office and look forward to the latter half of our year, my mind takes me back to some of the best weeks I had in August. The hot days and long, fun nights of the state fair. Whether it was interacting with the featured farm families, FFA members and the public, or the late nights spent with friends in the barns, the Indiana State Fair was one of my favorite things this year. Although we over watered, and killed many plants… the memories made were amazing.

Members: Chapter Visits and Conferences, Savannah
Everyone always talks about how time flies. That statement is very relevant when reflecting on the past six months of state office. Much of the first half of our year was spent with members. Whether
that was during September when we were traveling the state facilitating in many different FFA chapters, or the five weekends that members traveled the to the center during conference season. These interactions with members have been one of my highlights of state office. It’s amazing how we are all so unique in our interests, backgrounds, and perspectives, yet everytime I talk to a member I am able to connect with them and find common ground. I can’t wait to continue to build on these relationships over the next six months and make even more.

Sponsors: B&I Visits, Brittany
Indiana FFA has been continually improving since we were first established, and the officer team has witnessed first hand one of the reasons this is possible: our sponsors. December was filled with business and industry visits. We traveled the state to learn about the values and opportunities of each company. Visits often consisted of one-on-one interactions with employees, meeting with CEOs and/or founders, and getting a tour of the facilities. This was my favorite part of the first six months of office because it opened my eyes to the different ways I could see myself working in the agriculture industry. I honestly did not put much thought into internships or other career opportunities for the future. Now my teammates and I have taken a step into the industry and created strong relationships with businesses that we will foster throughout the rest of our year and going into college.

Last Six Months
Kick Starting the Year: Ft. Wayne Farm Show and FFA Week, Jarrett
Being on the other side of the veil: a phrase that you may have heard before. If not, it means that you’re seeing the inner workings and other perspectives of something you had experienced
previously. This opportunity has been made available to me as I travel back home to the Ft. Wayne Farm Show. For many years I went to the show with my FFA chapter and talked to people I knew who were promoting their businesses. Now I get to go help spread news of the Indiana FFA Organization to them and meet with members that lived just down the road from me. Then, I move on to members in areas of the state that I have never seen before with FFA Week. From meeting members for Page Day at the State House to speaking with members at their school, I am beyond excited to enjoy these experiences. Seeing state officers come to my school was something that intrigued me. Seeing them come and just casually mesh with the members; laughing, joking, and sharing their wisdom was fascinating to say the least. Now that I get the chance to do this, I should probably think of some profound advice to give and decently funny jokes to tell.

Traveling Indiana: Banquet Season, Austin
I remember being a sixth grader at my first chapter FFA banquet, I had not yet acquired an FFA jacket, so I was wearing a dark blue shirt in an attempt to fit in. I stood in the back corner of South Newton’s ag room examining the wall, on which all of the past state officer portraits were hanging. When my father came to find me he asked what I was doing, to him I declared, “I am going to do that one day.” The chapter banquet was my initial inspiration to strive for more in FFA; eating incredible food, socializing with friends, and looking forward to the year to come were the activities I loved. I am beyond thrilled to be conducting banquet travels, sponsored by CountryMark, around the state. I’m sure that visiting all the chapters, seeing their accomplishments, and enjoying the nights with their members will be a rejuvenating blast from my past.

Rounding off the Year: State Convention, Chyenne
It is crazy to think that state convention is less than six months away. My teammates and I have been brainstorming ideas since before we released the new theme, Surge! This week in June at Purdue University holds a time for FFA members to meet up with friends they made from earlier in the year, compete in their favorite LDE’s and see Elliott Hall of Music busting with energy. Our state officer team is beyond excited to recognize members for their achievements and dedication. Talking about the end of this year may bring a tear to my eye, but it is the beginning for seven new individuals. As we round off our year with state convention, we will be able to meet the 2019-2020 Indiana FFA State Officer Team!!

"We are ready for an amazing rest of our year!!" ~ 18-19 SO Team

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