We’re counting down the days to the 2013 Wyoming FFA Convention. I look forward to the event as much today as I did during my own days as an FFA member. Convention is slated for April 8-11 in Cheyenne. Throughout the week we’ll have the chance to see some really outstanding young leaders in action. I always leave Cheyenne feeling reassured there are up and coming leaders capable of addressing the challenges our nation faces.
Over the course of four days, FFA members in Cheyenne will attend their annual convention, but also compete in Career Development Events (CDE). These events reflect future career options in the fields of agriculture, natural resource management and more. CDEs provide students an opportunity to explore career fields while developing marketable skills while they’re still in high school. Thanks to numerous dedicated FFA Advisors, an ambitious state staff and many volunteers, Wyoming FFA will select those teams and individual who will represent Wyoming at the National FFA Convention in the fall.
On April 9 we’ll be hosting around 30 businesses, colleges and others from across the state in our first annual Career Fair. This event should provide FFA members with a great opportunity to explore future paths and visit with college recruiters. Simultaneously they’ll have the chance to attend a leadership conference featuring everything from personal growth and goal setting to animal care. It’s sure to be a fun-filled, educational event.
FFA traditions remain strong going into this year’s convention, but the Wyoming State FFA Officer Team and State Advisor Stacy Broda and her team made some exciting new changes, too. I’d like to applaud Mrs. Broda for the outstanding job she’s done as Wyoming’s State FFA Advisor over the past few months. I’d also like to give a shout out to our 2012-2013 Wyoming State FFA Officer Team for their service over the past year. I’m anxious to see them on stage in Cheyenne early April. It’s always amazing to see the change in our state officers between being elected and delivering their retiring addresses.
Bryce McKenzie, President
Jessica Pingetzer, Vice President
Colby Hales, Second Vice President
Payton Blackwell, Secretary
Nick Edelman, Treasurer
Ashley Spatz, Reporter
Taylor Smock, Sentinel
Lisa Andreen, Parliamentarian
As many of you already know, Wyoming lost an outstanding young leader when Third Vice President Teddy Weekly passed away in February. Teddy will be with Wyoming FFA in spirit as we gather in Cheyenne. State convention staff will be wearing lanyards featuring Teddy’s personal motto — “Refuse to Lose.”
The Wyoming FFA Convention is the largest youth gathering held in the state of Wyoming. What’s more exciting is that it’s growing. We’ll know for sure in a few weeks, but I think it’s safe to say that there will be over 1,000 people in attendance at many of the early April convention sessions. It’s news that’s good for our young people and good for the future of agriculture. Each one of those young leaders is gaining a greater understanding of agriculture’s importance, quality leadership, civic engagement and personal responsibility.
There’s a lot to celebrate at the 2013 Wyoming FFA Convention! Stay tuned for more updates and please consider following the Wyoming FFA Foundation on Facebook or subscribing to our electronic newsletter at WyoFFAFoundation.com. We’ll be providing updates from this year’s convention.
Jennifer Vineyard Womack is executive director of the Wyoming FFA Foundation and a freelance writer. She can be reached at Womack@Wyoming.com or at 307-351-0730.