by: Cale Pellett
Atlantic FFA Reporter
On April 19, 2015, 16 members of the Atlantic FFA along with advisor Eric Miller and chaperone Danna Saeugling left Atlantic High School to attend the 87th Annual Iowa FFA Leadership Conference. This event was held in Ames, Iowa at both Hilton Coliseum and the Scheman Building on Iowa State University’s campus from the 19th-21st.
The first activity the Atlantic Chapter took part in was the Meals from the Heartland program. FFA members assembled and packed meals to be sent to less fortunate countries around the world. Meals from the Heartland is an organization that packages several thousand meals for people in countries where food is scarce. With this year’s addition of packing food, the Iowa FFA has successfully made over one million meals over the past four years as this was the 4th year in a row Iowa FFA has packed over 250,000 meals.
Over Monday (20th) and Tuesday (21st), all 18 people that left for Ames were very busy. The first Career Development Event (CDE) was Creed Speaking; this was done by freshman, Cale Pellett, who placed 6th at the contest out of 18 contestants. At the same time, Clayton Saeugling participated in the an Auditing Committee Meeting and Adam Freund worked with other FFA members from Iowa at Program Of Activities Committee Meeting. Nate Moen and Lexi Freund represented Atlantic FFA at delegate meeting. FFA chapter delegates such as these two are the members that decide the state officers that will be installed at the fourth general session.
Also on Monday, the conference featured the first of four general sessions. Over the four sessions, several terms of business arose. During each of the sessions, two, or sometimes three officers will give their retiring speech. Another feature of these sessions included the speeches given by high upheld members of the agriculture society: this includes Governor Terry Branstad, Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, and many other guest speakers such as Dr. Will Keim.
During the conference, there were two tests taken: the Greenhand Test and the Farm Business Management Test. Freshmen Josh Rossell and Emily Saeugling both took the Greenhand Test and earned a silver. This test consists of basic to hard questions about the FFA organization in general. It tests the new member’s abilities to know the history and current information about the FFA. Morgan Barkley, Sam Barkley, Clint Hansen, and Marshal McDermott took the Farm Business Management Test and earned a Bronze. The FBM is a test that analyzes agriculture, farm, and ranch business management information. It applies these economic principles to the decision-making process. It also evaluates agriculture business, and farm business management decisions, as well as the testing of the members ability to work together cooperatively as a group.
Throughout the conference, several members took part in personal tours of different parts of the Iowa State University campus. These were given by Mr. Miller and Mrs. Saeugling and ranged from the general campus to the 450 Farm to the ISU Dairy Farm.
At the fourth and final general session, three members from Atlantic were a major part of in the session. First, freshman Miranda Chipman played percussion instruments in the Iowa FFA band shortly after the introduction. And as convention came to a close at the end of the session, seniors Adam Freund and Savannah Sorensen walked across the stage to receive their Iowa FFA degrees. In order to receive this prestigious awards, FFA members must complete all of the following: be an FFA member for two years, complete two years of high school, invested at least $1,000 in their SAE or 300 hours in excess to class time work or a combo of the two. Recipients must have committed 25 years to community service, performed 10 procedures of parliamentary procedure, given a six-minute speech relating to agriculture, served as an officer or other satisfactory position held by chapter, and had a strong enough school record, as deemed by their superintendent or principal.
From this great experience, Atlantic FFA members gained great knowledge and a better understanding of the FFA organization. Whether this was from the free tours given by people from our community or the very interesting sessions given by one of the greatest organizations ever created: the Future Farmers of America.
Chapter Delegates: Lexi Freund and Nate Moen
Chapter Display: Emily McDermott, Alexis Boes, Carly Westphalen
Farm Business Management Team: Morgan Barkley, Marshal McDermott, Sam Barkley, Clint Hansen
FFA Creed: Cale Pellett
Greenhand Test: Emily Saeugling and Josh Rossell
Meals from the Heartland
State Convention Group: Left to Right Back Row Miranda Chipman, Josh Rossell, Cale Pellett, Nate Moen, Marshal McDermott, Clint Hansen, Sam Barkley, Clayton Saeugling, Adam Freund Left to Right Front Row Carly Westphalen, Morgan Barkley, Emily McDermott, Lexi Freund, Alexis Boes, Emily Saeugling