Newton County FFA attends national convention

Photo by Howard Reed

Photo by Howard Reed

The Georgia FFA Association had seven national winners and was recognized recently for the largest membership growth in the nation at the 82nd National FFA Convention held in Indianapolis.

Eleven members of the Newton County FFA Chapter had the opportunity to attend this event that is held annually in Indianapolis. Kelli Hardy, Andrew Terrell, Emily Leissa, Danni Jones, Jenna Lawson, Kayla Sinnemon, Aleah Hill, Ben Richardson, Gary Jones, Chris Pollett and Ryan Barrett were the members that went to the National Convention along with Ryan Talton and Justin Bennett, the chapter advisors.

FFA members attended sessions that taught them how to become better leaders and learned about opportunities available to them through the National FFA Organization.

Keynote speaker Mike Rowe, creator of the television series "Dirty Jobs," was inspirational as he explained how important it is for FFA members to tell the story of American agriculture and how important it is for the entire world. Rowe also gave advice on how students can become involved in promoting agriculture and how all of the dirty jobs make the world a better place.

Members from Newton County also witnessed the National Parliamentary Procedure finals, as they competed for the national title in this Career Development Event.

Along with the sessions that the FFA members attended, they also participated in workshops. The FFA Chapter Officers were seven out of the eleven that went to the workshops, which taught them how to be more involved and how to be more assertive with the chapter. The workshops also taught the officers how to manage their time and to put more time in the chapter and into meetings.

Keynote speaker Josh Sundquist, a 2006 Paralympics athlete, motivated FFA members from around the county by talking about life's obstacles and how to overcome them. Sundquist lost his left leg when he was 9 years old to cancer and has overcome this obstacle as a downhill skier in the 2006 Olympic Games.

Attending the 82nd National FFA Convention with more than 53,000 FFA members from across the country encouraged Newton County FFA members to Lead Out Loud, the convention's theme.

The Georgia Association has over 29,000 members, making it the third largest association in the nation. The FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agriculture education.