Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Make That Impact

We all impact someone each day, whether we know it or not.

This didn’t become real to me until my Senior year of high school, when I was on top. At little Eastern Hancock high school, you are the talk of the town when you are finally a Senior. As a person was involved in everything through high school, I had adults, members of the community, and people younger than me constantly coming up to me when I was in public.

As FFA events started back up, we would have an FFA meeting every first Thursday of the month. I would  have a young gal with brown hair named Audrey come up to me after the meeting and always want to talk. I didn’t think twice about it, so I would have a quick conversation with her and we would go on with our night. 

As time would go by, I would end up visiting and facilitating younger classes for my ag teachers. I was in my cousin’s class one day, and she was in the same grade as that brown haired 8th grader I wrote about earlier. My cousin came up to me one day and was talking about how much that girl would talk about me - about my style, the jewelry I wore, my personality, and how I took time to simply talk to her. I had no idea the things I said to her were making an impact. It was in these moments I truly understood the power humans have to make a difference.

With this story, I challenge you to evaluate this - are you taking time for other people? What are you doing to ensure others are feeling loved, valued, and appreciated? Our impact on others can be positive or negative -- it’s up to you on how you choose to make that impact.

Make that impact,

Jordyn Wickard

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Your Passion Can Take You Places

    If I was told 10 years ago I would have over 100 goats before I would graduate high school I would have laughed. Ya see when I was 8 years old I fell in love with goats. Does anyone know why? No one does, including myself. It took me 4 years to convince my dad to let me get my goats. Now when I first wanted goats I only wanted a few and I wanted to start my goat journey with Angora goats (these are the ones that look like sheep) but I did not get any.

Pictured is one of the first does I ever purchased, so fondly named “Beardy.” As you may see my sister’s insistence on me learning how to braid paid off. 

    When we find something that we are passionate about, it drives us to further develop that passion. For me what started as a passion for raising goats, persuaded me to follow a career within the livestock industry. Do not ever be afraid to follow your passion, even if it started  with the single thought of getting goats.

You’re goat loving Reporter,

    Jeremiah Geise

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Romanticizing Life

Romanticizing- to believe that something is better, more interesting, or more exciting than it really is

Have you ever heard of the trends where you do tasks everyday to romanticize your life? Well, over the summer I took on the challenge. I was determined to make every moment this summer as special as possible. Below I have added some photos which represent some of these activities I took part in.  (Please note some photos are poor quality due to immense levels of fun happening!)

The first image you see is the team participating in an intense game of rain volleyball. Despite being soaking wet and sand flying into everyone’s eyes. It was the best time of my life. We were all able to let go for a while and just enjoy a simple game of volleyball. I learned that some of the best moments were had in the pouring rain.

Next is a photo of a sunflower field. Kourtney and I discovered this one day driving down a random road in Franklin. The sign said “You Cut Sunflowers”, so we immediately pulled over. After about thirty minutes of cutting flowers, we came home with about 12 in total. Spending some time surrounded by happy colors of bright yellow and green filled me with total serotonin. A simple action became one of my favorite events of the summer.

As my last photo for this post, it is clear that I am inside of a dinosaur egg. I thought this was the best way to capture how I enjoyed the state fair. Yes, the state fair was a struggle. But, I had some small moments that created a lot of joy during this time. First, I was able to take goofy photos with different photo ops which still make me laugh and feel like I am five. Second, I spent 12 dollars to purchase a massive slushie. It was totally worth it. Plus the refills were only five dollars! Being able to let go and just have a little fun made the state fair an experience I definitely will not forget. What a way to end my summer!

To summarize it all, I created memorable moments in the most unexpected ways and places. I challenge each of you to create those memories for yourself throughout this year. Go buy yourself some ice cream on your way home from school or go dance in the rain after you finish a sports practice. 

Living in the moment,

Madisen Carns

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Plants and People

Jungle life. That’s the closest thing I can compare living in the state officer house to. Plants crowd the tables, corners, and have started to overtake our front porch. Now, this doesn’t come as a surprise considering Jeremiah and I have a small obsession with the plant kind. We even added plants to our fish bowl. 

While these plants are some of the cutest decorations, there are a lot of lessons to learn from them. 

Water and Vitamin D

Growing up, my mom would always tell me to drink some water and go outside any time I would start to get irritated. She’d tell me that I need to treat myself like the plants in my room. In all honesty, we need just as much water and sunlight as those plants because we all know seasonal depression is a real thing. 


We hear about growth a lot, both in character and physically. Some plants grow at a rapid rate, others can take years to grow. One thing I’ve learned is that there is no set pace for growth, and it will even change according to what season of life you’re in. There are even times where you’ll blossom, but remember that blooms don’t last forever- and that’s okay. 

Get Dirty

Repotting plants has become one of the most therapeutic activities ever. Getting dirt under your fingernails, breaking apart the roots, then taking off any dead leaves (small tip: don’t do it on the kitchen table with Nicholas in the house). Be sure to take those moments to get dirty. Soak up those moments where you can act like a kid- those are the best mental breaks. 

Losing Leaves

As plants grow they lose leaves when they don’t help the plant anymore. It’s okay to lose some of your own leaves: friends, hobbies, talents. It’s even okay to grow some new ones. 

Even though plants seem pretty far from being like people, we do have some similarities. So, run on over to your favorite greenhouse, get a plant, and learn a couple lessons yourself. 

Still plant obsessed,


Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Life is a Balancing Act

As the 2021-22 school year begins for many students across Indiana, it has made me reflect upon my highschool career and realize just how hectic it had been. Everyday my time was split between what felt like fifteen different things: FFA, academics, sports, clubs, extracurriculars, baking, family, friends. After school I would have Livestock Skillathon Practice until 5. But I had to leave early to get to soccer practice by 4:30. And then I had to go to the barn to work with my dairy heifers. And then I had to be home to bake a cake for an order that I had taken. And then I would have to go home and do homework for two or three hours. And then and then and then. 

Every single day felt like a continuous “and then.” I was stuck in a cycle of taking too much on with too little time. It was draining. It led to burnout. Because of this, I had a horrible case of senioritis. I did not want to do school work during the day, so I didn’t. You would see me in Mrs. Brashaber’s calculus class working on FFA stuff almost every single day. Because of this, I would do almost six hours of calculus the night before the test so that I could teach myself the lessons. (I would strongly discourage doing this. It led to a slight energy drink addiction and was so much more difficult than just paying attention in class lol). 

While I did enjoy my highschool career, it was not fulfilling. By constantly focusing on what was coming next (the “and then”), I often forgot to live in the moment. Accomplishments in high school did not register in my brain because they were simply something to check off my to-do list. I was living an unbalanced life: one that was focused on the future and not the present. 

My entire highschool career I struggled finding a balance between academics, FFA, and athletics. As you are beginning this new school year, I would encourage you to try and find that balance. Find a balance in which you are truly happy with your life and what you have accomplished. I will not tell you to prioritize academics. I will not tell you to prioritize FFA. I will not tell you to prioritize athletics. Instead, I would encourage you to remember your limits and realize that life is a balancing act. 

Finding a Balance,

Nicholas Neuman

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Advice from the Most Random Place

When I was growing up my family didn’t have streaming services. We tried to get Netflix once but our wifi was too slow for streaming shows and it was not until very recently that we upgraded our wifi to manageable levels. Because of this, I missed out on some of the most popular shows out there. I never watched the Office, Yellowstone, or countless other icons. So when I got elected to state office- and had access to every streaming service you can imagine, thanks to my wonderful teammate- I knew it was time to start catching up. While I have watched the shows I mentioned I quickly became obsessed with the series Criminal Minds. I do not know what got me hooked whether it was the cast or the brain-stumping mysteries, but I do know that pretty soon I started thinking like the characters from the show. I was analyzing different things and even had some weird dreams about solving crimes, but those are stories for another time. I did notice that I started picking up some pretty great advice from the show. 

First off was the idea of a team leader. In FFA we are often called upon to be leaders. In Criminal Minds, the team has its leader, Jason Gideon. Surprisingly enough he’s taught me some important things about being a good leader. First off is that you have to listen to the advice of others. In the show, Gideon will lead his team into a crime scene to start profiling a killer. Of course, he has his perception of the killer but always asks what his teammates' opinions are first. He realized that to be a good leader you need to listen to what your team has to say. Similarly in FFA when leading others we need to ask what their opinions are. Their strengths will help cover our weaknesses and lead to a better job. 

This leads me to the next point, learning opportunities can come from anywhere. After asking his team for their opinions he gives his own opinion on a crime. But instead of just telling them he helps them to understand where he is coming from. Oftentimes it is the small things that he catches and teaches the others to catch as well. Most of the time by the end of the episode the other detectives are using the same techniques that Gideon just taught them. Again this advice is very prevalent in our FFA careers. While activities like our SAEs, CDEs, and LDEs, and conferences are great ways to learn, FFA is full of those small opportunities to learn. Oftentimes through small interactions with other members, we learn so much. But not only in FFA, in life in general. I know back in high school that I had teachers who when asked a question would answer with their own so that you would have to find the answer out. While I always disliked this, looking back it was those small learning experiences that taught me the most.

That leads me to my last point. The smallest things are often the most important. In almost every episode the criminal is caught because of small details. Oftentimes it takes the entire episode to discover the detail but it has a serious impact on the case. Just like how we can learn so much from the small interactions with other members, those same members can be impacted by the small things that we do. This impact can go either way. Either we can inspire, encourage, and make others happy. Or our small actions can make others sad, discouraged, and lonely. 

When I started watching criminal minds I had no expectations to learn lessons that I would use in my state officer year. But the more I watched the more I learned. Some of the best advice I have found is from the most unlikely places. 

With more stories, 
Tyler Kilmer

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Accepting Change

This past year, I was given the opportunity to give an address to my class before we walked
across the stage to receive our diplomas and graduate. In the past, this speech was centered
around a specific quote that shared the message the speaker wanted to send. So, I figured that
I would start by deciding on a quote, and work from there, but that didn’t quite work out in my
favor. Now, I’ve never really had a problem writing speeches, it’s always come pretty natural to
me; however, for some reason, as I was preparing to speak at my graduation, I simply couldn’t
put any words on paper. I was stuck.

Eventually, it got too close to time to dilly dally any longer – I had to decide on a quote and get
writing. I forced myself to sit at my computer to google “good quotes” and read until my eyes
couldn’t take it anymore. After a few sessions of quote hunting, I finally found the one I was
looking for. I began to cry as I read the words of this beautiful quote and realized how personal
it was to me and those I was graduating with.

“There comes a day when you realize turning the page is the best feeling in the world – because
you realize there is so much more to the book than the page you were stuck on."

After I read these words, I was set on using them as the basis for my speech on graduation day.
I took some time to sit down with a friend and my mom and brainstorm the different directions
I could take this speech, and finally, I settled on one. I quickly realized that I wasn’t just
addressing the members of my class, but also our parents, teachers, community members, and
most of all, myself. It was at that moment that it really set in that my life was about to change
drastically, and it was finally time to accept that change, take my life by the horns, and start
paving the direction I wanted my life to go. So, that’s exactly what I put in my speech.

As a graduating senior, I was terrified of not knowing what my life was going to look like in the
next year, next month, or even the next couple weeks. I was running for state office and didn’t
know if I would be moving away from home in June to be an officer or in August as I attended
college. I didn’t know whether to prepare myself for a year of service to Indiana FFA or for a
year of education at Purdue University. To say I was terrified, is an understatement. However,
as I was writing and giving my speech, I quickly realized just how much I had been dragging my
feet and avoiding the acceptance of change.

It was time. Time to love the experiences and opportunities I had in high school and get ready
for whatever was about to come my way. Time to appreciate the relationships I had formed
and begin building new ones. Time to learn from the hardships I had and prepare to risk my
time in new adventures.

Although change may be scary and could very well terrify you, I would encourage you to take a
look at where you are in life. Are you putting off change because you’re afraid? Are you waiting
for “just the right time” that will never come? What are you putting off? When you figure that
out, muster up as much courage as you can and face the change you’re embarking on. It may
just be the best decision of your life.

With love and confidence,

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Cultivating Intentionality

Throughout the past couple of weeks, I have had the chance to really get to know my teammates. The things they love doing, hate doing, what makes them tick, what makes them laugh, and everything in between. We are all completely different people, but we already have managed to find one thing we all somewhat enjoy doing - shopping at the Goodwill Outlet. Now, if you haven’t been to a Goodwill Outlet, I challenge you to hop in your car right now and go find one. There are BINS FULL of clothes, random items, and furniture. I will admit, I had the thought that this was not going to be worth my time before walking through those automatic doors. Honestly, it felt a lot like the beginning of The Hunger Games when the players run and find their weapons and what they think is needed. People were lining the walls, waiting for the bins to be put out for the next rotation. 

As we started in, I found that there was some (surprisingly) high quality stuff. Teammates were rummaging through the bins, finding items that we all needed (especially for the price). These moments are ones I will never take for granted - because we were cultivating intentionality in those small moments. Sometimes, it’s those moments when we are living in the moment and being spontaneous, we make the most unforgettable memories. Throughout my time in the house with my teammates, we have already made those intentional memories. From buying pairs of jeans that are way too large and trying to fit in them, to sitting around the campfire, listening to the sounds of the center while making smores.

We all have the ability to cultivate intentionality. I challenge you to make those memories. Go on those unplanned trips. Take some risks that will allow you to grow individually and with the people surrounding you. Cultivate. Intentionality.

Living purposefully,

Jordyn Wickard

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Keep on the Sunny Side

Soft buzzing sounds, fuzzy yellow bugs with stripes of black zipping around my head, and the sweet sweet smell of nectar and beeswax are the thoughts that filled my head for months. I wanted to become a beekeeper! Just the thought of having bees gave me a jolt of excitement, but also dread. This is because I was going to have to muster up enough courage to ask my parents if they were okay with me wanting to become a beekeeper. My mother was ecstatic and was already sold on the idea when I told her, however, my dad was weary. He hates bees, they can sting him and he does not like the idea that they can do that. Despite this, my mother and I pushed on. 

As a result of my mother and I’s persistence, we have been beekeepers for almost a year and a half now and it is so much fun! We get to go out and enjoy being with the bees, as well as go out and collect swarms across Rush County. While at times it can be stressful it is well worth it. I can spend time with my mom and slowly help my dad overcome his fear of bees, it was well worth it. 

When it comes to presenting a new idea whether it be to a group of classmates, fellow members, or even our family it can be hard to do so. This could be from the thought of your idea or passion being viewed in a negative light rather than the positive one you hold, or the fact that the idea might get shot down. This can be scary, but you do not know until you try. Never bee afraid to bring forth your idea, it would bee a shame.

Keep on the sunny side,

   Jeremiah Geise

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Only Child to 6 New Siblings

Only Child, 6 New Siblings

I grew up in a house with only my mom and me. After spending two weeks with the new team, I started to realize that the crazy had only begun. However, I would not trade these new experiences with built in brothers and sisters for the world. I thought I would include some funny, interesting things I have found out along the way.

Your closet is no longer “your closet”- As we were moving in, all four girls unloaded their bags removing loads of clothes. As I was unpacking my own, all of us made an agreement that our closets were free game. I had never shared clothes before so this was all new to me. I guess my closet size just multiplied by four.

Ordering family size is normal- One of our dinners during base camp was a trip to Buca di Beppo. I had never gone due to the smaller size of my family. As I watched Martin order three large family size entrees, I was shocked. I had no clue how we were going to eat all of it. However, I had to realize that I was no longer eating with one other family member but with eight other people that night.

Your comfort zone will be destroyed- One of the more interesting stories of the first week was trying out the rope swing. To be very honest, I was super scared. As the team started going off the rope one by one, I was still at the top wanting to avoid my turn. It came to the moment everyone had been waiting for. I went to grab on to the rope swing and it took me a good ten minutes before I would swing off. However, I did not let go my first time and instead swung right back onto the ground. It took a lot of encouragement for me to eventually go again and actually land in the water.

We all care about each other no matter what- As we have grown to know each other more this week, we have gotten to know all the nitty gritty about our pasts and why we are the person that you see today. Those personal moments are something I would not trade for the world. The State Officer Team truly is one large family. They are those people that you trust so soon that you wonder if you are crazy. It is a home despite not living in the one you grew up in for so many years.

Dear Kourtney, Nicholas, Tyler, Abby, Jordyn, and Jeremiah,

I am so thankful to be a part of this team with you all this year. I can already tell that we are going to grow so much through this experience and I am glad that I have the pleasure of doing it with you. You all have such kind hearts that have welcomed me in like the family I never knew I needed. The laughs and small moments make this team so special.

With Love,
Madisen Carns

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

2021-2022 Officer Intros

After one final tap of a gavel, seven individuals’ lives changed within a blink of an eye. Each one taking the giant step towards a year of service. Now, it’s your chance to meet them. 

From Madisen Carns,

Hello, Indiana FFA! I am thrilled to be serving the organization this year as your 2021-2022 State Sentinel. I hail from the Mt.Vernon @ Fortville chapter located near Greenfield, Indiana but was an out-of-district student. I do not have the agricultural background of some of my teammates and was raised in a more quiet suburban setting. However, I can proudly say that ever since my sophomore year of high school; I have been highly involved in this wonderful organization. My passion for personal growth and agriculture has only increased through these past couple of years. Also, I cannot lie I am a huge fan of Meats Judging as well. I look forward to meeting all of you and seeing the great things we can accomplish together! Indiana FFA, let's get started on a fantastic year!

From Jeremiah Geise,

Heyo Indiana FFA! I am excited to be serving as the 2021-2022 State Reporter! I hail from the Rushville FFA Chapter in District IX, where I competed in a variety of CDEs and LDEs including; Livestock Skill-a-thon, Soils Judging, Parliamentary Procedure, Agricultural Sales, and Employment Skills. I am very fortunate to have a deep connection to the agricultural industry through my family farm where we raise sheep, goats, pigs, chickens, and rabbits, in addition to our apiary. I am excited to travel across the state and learn more about the members of Indiana FFA.

From Jordyn Wickard,

Hey hey, Indiana FFA! I am Jordyn Wickard, and I'm ecstatic to serve Indiana FFA this year as the State Treasurer! I hail from the Eastern Hancock FFA Chapter located in District 8 (get ready, because D8 brings the party). I am from the town of Greenfield, Indiana. I am a lover of all things turquoise, pink drinks, the color yellow, and ANYTHING cows. I grew up on my family farm, where we raise and show registered Angus cattle, and started a Boer goat herd in 2015. My happy place is the barn, and you could often find me there anyday working and washing my livestock. I LOVE people and am often described as a social butterfly. I am beyond excited to build connections with FFA members across this amazing state this year and help members feel valued, loved, and heard. Get excited, Indiana FFA!

From Abby Stuckwisch,

Coming from the small town of Brownstown in District XI, I am ecstatic to be leading Indiana FFA in such a large way! This year I will be serving as the 2021-2022 Indiana FFA State Southern Region Vice President, and when I say I couldn’t be more thrilled, I SERIOUSLY couldn’t be more thrilled. Growing up I definitely had my fair share of exposure to the agriculture world as I helped out my dad on the farm herding pigs, riding in tractors, and stacking firewood. Throughout my time in FFA you could find me attending conferences, participating in crops and soils judging, laughing with my team during parliamentary procedure practices, and spending long hours in the ag room preparing for leadership development events.  My true passion emerged as I participated in the Agriculture Education CDE and began my own Agriculture Education SAE; it is truly this experience that has encouraged me to continue advocating for agriculture and teaching others. As I look forward to this year, I can’t wait to meet, serve, and learn from each and every one of you. Indiana FFA, let’s  get ready for a truly sensational year!

From Tyler Kilmer,

Hello Indiana FFA! I am extremely excited to be serving as the 2021-2022 Indiana FFA Northern Region Vice President. I hail from the Tri-County FFA chapter in Wolcott all the way up in District 1. For as long as I can remember I have been involved in agriculture. From memories of sitting on my grandpa’s lap in the tractor to working 4-H animals in the summer. When the opportunity to join FFA arrived I jumped at the chance to be a part of this organization. FFA has provided me with numerous opportunities to serve my community and to advance my knowledge and skills. Throughout high school, I had a very diverse FFA experience. I made it a goal to try as many Career and Leadership development events as possible. This led me to be active on the parliamentary procedures team, soils team, public speaking, and everything else in-between. I also had the wonderful opportunity to attend and later council at both FIRE and SOAR. It is because of these opportunities that I decided to run for state office so that I can continue to impact members both young and old. Indiana FFA I can not wait to get to know you and make more memories with you.

From Nicholas Neuman,

Hello FFA! I am beyond grateful to serve this next year as the 2021-22 Indiana FFA State Secretary! I am proud to call the Rushville FFA Chapter in District IX (#Cloud9) my home chapter. Being a second generation FFA member and lifelong agriculturalist, the blue corduroy has always been present in my life. While I grew up on a traditional cattle and swine operation, I consider the dairy industry my true passion. From livestock skill-a-thon to parliamentary procedure to public speaking to dairy judging, I’ve tried just about everything that FFA has to offer. If I wasn’t in the Ag Building practicing CDEs, you could most likely find me playing soccer with friends. I’m an avid baker, Walmart t-shirt buyer, and Criminal Minds watcher. I’m ecstatic to embrace the uncertainty of this year and make lasting, meaningful connections. Indiana FFA, I am so excited to grow alongside the amazing individuals in this organization!

From Kourtney Otte, 

Hi, Indiana FFA! I am beyond honored to be able to serve you all as the 2021-2022 State President. My roots are dug deep in Seymour, Indiana located in District XI (I also proudly call Seymour FFA home.) My passion for the agriculture industry started on my grandparents farm, but quickly grew like a wildfire through FFA. Originally I planned on following in my mother’s footsteps with livestocking judging and parliamentary procedure, but that quickly changed when my advisor pulled me in for creed speaking… I haven’t looked back since. Over the past 5 years I’ve competed in countless CDE’s and LDE’s to the point that I can’t remember most of them. But, anytime I couldn’t be found in the ag room, you could always find me curled up with a new book (please send me book recommendations)  or with bits of charcoal under my fingernails.

As we all enter the next chapter in our lives, the team and I could not be any more excited to experience this year with you all and create memories that last a lifetime. Indiana FFA, as always, keep being awesome. 

With love, 

2021-2022 Officer Team

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Signing Off

2020-2021 Indiana FFA State Officer Team

Shelbyville Central. Hamilton Heights. Tri-County. Eastern Hancock. Wawasee. Union City. Frontier. We came from different towns, different chapters, and different backgrounds. We each had our own FFA story and varying levels of agricultural experience. We reached this unique and special moment from different and diverse paths. 

Our journey ended just like it began. We embraced the challenges of a difficult year and created new opportunities for our members. We are thankful that you trusted us to guide Indiana FFA over the past twelve months. We’ve been through a lot together. Coming into State Office, we were surrounded by the uncertainties of a virtual State Convention. To end this year with thousands of FFA members celebrating at the State Fairgrounds was a huge milestone. We recognize the hardships and struggles that many went through during this time. The mental drain of constantly shifting plans brought us to our limits. Through every hurdle that Indiana FFA faced, we never gave up. The past year has proven our strength and resilience. It’s not easy to crush our spirit. And it's definitely not easy to tell the FFA that something cannot be done.

We are forever grateful to the members who participated in our programs and showed up when we needed them the most. In-person conferences and traveling for FFA Week became some of the biggest highlights from the year. We appreciate the advisors who went out of their way to motivate students and increase involvement. Without a strong presence in the classroom, our events would not have been as successful and our impact not as great. We would also like to recognize our incredible state staff who constantly inspired us. Their continued dedication to Indiana FFA gave us the foundation to reach ever greater heights.

As our world returns back to normal and our organization walks a new path, remember what you embraced from this year. Take what you have learned, make it a part of your personal journey, and use it to impact others. Thank you for letting us be a part of that process with you.

Signing Off,

Julia, Kylie, Blayne, Loren, Evan, Derick, and Luc

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

A Lil' Bit of Everything

I couldn’t decide (shocker right) what I wanted my final blog to Indiana FFA to be. So, I combined my two ideas into one. If you’re at all interested in a few stories during my officer term that I think we all can benefit from, awesome read the first half of this blog! If you’re interested in learning more about state convention - you’re in luck, head to the second part of the blog. If neither one of those interest you, I’m very sorry. Feel free to call me and we can chat about whatever is on your mind! With that said, let’s get to it.

Stories we all can benefit from:

Take the trip 

  • During my officer year, I traveled to Kansas with my teammate and friend Derick Williams. The purpose of the trip was to meet a Kansas FFA member who made an impact on us. Little did we know how life changing the trip would be. Not only did we meet Cali Newdigger and see the beautiful Kansas scenery, but we also met the outstanding 2020-21 Kansas FFA State Officer Team. Let me tell you, those gals have the BIGGEST hearts and embody what it means to be a K-State Wildcat! In fact, I think we might have actually convinced Derick to say “Go Cats” instead of “Go Irish”! Once we parted our ways, Derick and I spontaneously went three hours out of our way to visit the “middle of the United States” in Lebanon, Kansas. Did Derick and I both have other items to work on, yes. Were we exhausted, yes. But, at the end of the day our hearts and minds were full. In the end, we won’t remember the work, but we will remember the memories.  So, take the trip. Be spontaneous. Have fun.

Start the Conversation

  • During State Officer Summit, I saw a really cool gal by the name of Lori. I was super intrigued by her when I heard her mention she loved writing to pen pals. On July 22, 2020 I received an Instagram DM from a Nevada FFA State Officer asking for my address. Shortly after that I received a handwritten letter from Lori Ramm. I was fangirling. In my eyes Lori was a rockstar. Of course I wrote back to her! For a solid 5 months Lori and I wrote letters to each other. In fact, we didn’t even have each other on social media. I used to catch myself at events or surfing through social media thinking how cool other individuals are. I would tell myself I wanted to be friends with someone, but was normally too intimidated to start the conversation. Lori taught me to initiate, or start, the conversation. This small piece of advice gained me so many new friendships this year and I encourage you all to do the same. There’s value in handwritten letters, but this can also look like a letter, Instagram DM, or phone call!

Serve YOU

  • The last line in the FFA Motto is “Living to Serve''. I admire the servant leadership that our members carry and their dedication to living out the last line of our motto. With that said, we are so dedicated to serving others, that we often forget to serve ourselves. This past year has challenged me to serve myself more. This looked like going to the gym, journaling, and scheduling time to de-stress. All of this helped ensure I was mentally and physically able to serve others. If we don’t serve ourselves, we can’t effectively serve others. How can you serve yourself today, so that you can better serve others tomorrow? 

What to look for at the 92nd Indiana FFA State Convention:

  1. Inspiring Retiring Addresses

  2. Engaging Workshops

  3. Recognition of members

  4. State Officer Scavenger Hunt

  5. Motivational Keynote Speakers

Learn more about these and what the 92 IN FFA State Convention has to offer by downloading the State Convention Mobile App!

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(Photo: 2020-21 State Officer Team “State Convention Mood”)