Learning, Fellowship and Fun
The Wisconsin FFA Alumni held their annual convention February 10-12 in Janesville, Wisconsin. Alumni poured in from around the state, braving the blustery winter weather for a weekend of learning, fellowship and fun. A silent and two live auctions generated entertainment and funds to support FFA Alumni initiatives. Each year the WI FFA Alumni Council challenges the state FFA officer team to bring a painted item to auction. This year each officer had a mailbox painted and these one-of-a-kind masterpieces brought big bucks to support FFA members! Workshops were offered on a variety of topics from obtaining tax exempt status to round tables with agricultural educators to learn how FFA Alumni can expand their support of the local teacher and program. Additional activities included the business meeting and recognition of outstanding FFA Alumni members and affiliates for their support of Wisconsin FFA and agricultural education.
“Don’t Be the Missing Piece”
As the theme for the convention, it offered an abundance of food for thought. Jeff Hicken, State FFA Advisor with the Department of Public Instruction addressed the Alumni sharing his appreciation for their support. He mentioned that his colleagues in career and technical education lack the mobilized volunteer body that agricultural education has in Wisconsin. As he shared updates on the educational climate and budget challenges, Mr. Hicken challenged Alumni members to consider the theme. EVERY FFA Alumni member will need to step forward in support of agricultural education and FFA in the coming years within their school districts if they are to continue offering agricultural education. Additional comments throughout the conference point to the increased need for FFA Alumni to advocate on behalf of agricultural education and FFA to their friends, peers, communities and school boards and administrators.
Wisconsin FFA Alumni’s support of agricultural instructors extends to their convention. As encouragement for teachers to accompany their Alumni members to the event, the state FFA Alumni covers the cost of their conference fee and arranges tours of local agricultural related businesses. This year 21 teachers attended the convention to connect with FFA Alumni and garner some educational pieces from the local tours.
Congratulations to Wisconsin FFA Alumni on a successful convention. May you continue to ensure that there is no “missing piece” in helping agricultural education teachers and students succeed.
National FFA Alumni