Wyoming FFA brings past and future members closer together
As thermometers reach temperatures close to the triple digits, the county fair season is under way. Members of 4-H and FFA have been preparing for this time of year since it ended at the Wyoming State Fair last August. They are leading their steers, walking their pigs, and practicing their baking – and for another highlight of the fair season – looking forward to spending a week with the friends made from summers past.
The Wyoming FFA Association is now making it possible for members of the past and present to rekindle some of the friendships that were made. Wyoming FFA has begun the process of creating a database that will provide the Cowboy State with some of the association’s history.
One member at a time
“I think it is important for the younger generation to know the past, so we can continue to learn and improve our actions for the future. The Wyoming FFA History project is a great place to start,” says Jessica Pingetzer, Wyoming FFA Association state vice president.
Visitors of wyomingffa.org can access the Wyoming FFA History Project database to take a look at the past state officers as well as state degree recipients. The list of past state officers dates back to 1928, the year that the National FFA Organization was founded.
State degree recipients can be viewed from as far back as 1993. The next step in retelling the history of Wyoming FFA will be the addition of the agricultural instructor database.
“I didn’t know it until after I had been elected into a state officer position that one of my neighbors used to be an agriculture instructor. He wasn’t even the one to tell me – another one of our neighbors did. The project will help students learn these types of facts,” notes Pingetzer.
Leaving a legacy
“This is a great way for the association to leave a legacy and for the members of Wyoming FFA to connect with one another. You never know which one of your neighbors or life-long friends was also a part of the association,” says Pingetzer.
Individuals who look through the spreadsheets, which have been created through Google fusion, will be able to find members from their hometown, district, region or friends and contacts they have made throughout the state.
“Throughout my time in FFA and 4-H I have met a number of other members as well as adults who were also a part of Wyoming FFA. As time goes on, sometimes we lose touch with those individuals. The Wyoming FFA History Project can help us remember the people we have met and will hopefully encourage the younger members to learn more about the individuals who have helped shape the story of the Wyoming FFA Association,” says Taylor Smock, Wyoming FFA Association state parliamentarian.
Future of the project
“For us to continue working on telling the story of past FFA members, we are doing a great thing for current students, their chapters and the groups of members to come. I am very anxious to see how many people will begin to get involved in the project once it is in full swing,” says Smock.
“We are talking about a lot of new ideas, including the renovation of the website. The Wyoming FFA History project will be a big part of the things we work on as we begin to do that,” says Pingetzer.
The project has started at a good time for the state as the Wyoming State Fair is in its 100th year, and former members will be returning to fair to remember the past. Remembering time spent at the state fair may spark interest for past members to dig up a little Wyoming FFA history.
Allie Leitza is an intern for the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to firstname.lastname@example.org.