Missouri FFA and Agriculture Education | 2019-20 Officers
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2019-20 Officers

Right Time, Right Place

“Being in the right place at the right time produces the right outcome,” is a saying that I heard way more than I wanted to as a kid. While I shrugged off these comments my father made when I was younger, I have realized that this statement holds weight when it comes to FFA. As FFA members we can make lasting memories, impact lives and make connections that could lead to future employment opportunities.


It is important to remember as we navigate our FFA journey that we must always be present. Not only must we be present physically, but also mentally and emotionally. Being present doesn’t mean just taking in what you need yourself, but being present for others.


FFA members can always be present for others whether it is at camp, at a local business or even sitting in an agriculture class. It is hard to control the outcome of a situation, but it is easy to devote time and energy to being in the right place mentally for every situation.


Life can give us lemons, and the outcome depends on our reactions. Being mentally present and ready for anything that is thrown at you will inevitably produce a more desirable outcome. Always remember that as a FFA member, you must be present in order to produce the outcome you want. I challenge you to be in the right place to change lives and impact community members as much as possible.

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Moving Out of the Clouds into the Sunshine

As many of you have probably noticed, it has been raining quite a bit this spring, especially in my hometown of Silex. With that being said, several Missouri farmers have not had many opportunities to get into the fields. As of May 8, I had not spent a single hour in the tractor seat yet this spring, instead of the dozens of hours and hundreds of acres that would have normally been covered by that time.  However, as summer comes into full swing and the weather begins to clear, the opportunity to plant looks much brighter and brings hope for an immensely successful summer for agriculture in Missouri.


Many Missouri FFA members may have also had a nasty, unproductive spring. It might have been that your career development event or leadership development event did not go as well as planned, or you didn’t get that proficiency award or officer position. These unfortunate events serve as the rain on the parade of FFA members. They are all hard as they’re happening, but they provide positive learning experiences for the future, just like the rain provides the nourishment for plants throughout the summer.


As farmers across the state are looking to the summer sun to grow their corn to the next level, FFA members should also look into the sun to create a brighter future by learning from the unfortunate storms of our pasts. Some of these sunny days include the great opportunities that can be had at events like FFA Camp, Helping Youth Maximize their Agricultural eXperience (HYMAX), Public Speaking Academy (PSA) and Helping Youth Prepare for Excellence (HYPE).


Just like the corn all across Missouri will soak up the rays of sun this summer, I encourage all of you to soak up the new skills that can be learned and use them to build a successful year.

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Humble and Kind

Missouri State FFA Convention is complete, chapter banquets are in full swing, and the school year is coming to a close. Across the state, FFA members are being recognized for their hard work and dedication. Sometimes, it is easy to get caught up in the heat of it all, but let’s not forget what got us to this moment.


One of my all time favorite songs is “Humble and Kind” by Tim McGraw. This song is full of advice to keep in mind during our FFA careers. One line that rings true during this spring season is, “When the dreams you’re dreamin’ come to you, when the work you put in is realized, let yourself feel the pride but always stay humble and kind.”


Many of our dreams come true at state convention and chapter banquets as a result of our hard work. We all learn valuable life lessons putting us one step closer to our goals. However, every dream reached is the culmination of the hard work of multiple people: ourselves, advisors, parents, community members and many others. It is definitely our right to feel proud, but let’s not forget these other supporters. Dropping them a card of thanks or giving them a phone call is a simple gesture to show our gratitude and humbleness toward them.


Near the end of the song, McGraw sings this line, “When you get where you’re goin’, don’t forget to turn back around, help the next one in line, always stay humble and kind.” To me, this line is what FFA is all about. FFA is about having experiences of our own and using them to enrich the lives of others. While FFA gives us many life experiences and skills, they are useless unless we use them to help others. Past FFA members have given much to us. Let us continue to give to the next generation.


FFA members, we are part of an amazing organization. We have many outstanding supporters and influencers. As we go about life this year, let’s not forget our supporters or the FFA members coming behind us. Let us be thankful, humble and kind in all that we do!

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Get Your Gobbler

My absolute favorite outdoor pastime is turkey hunting. In fact, I am obsessed with it! From practicing my turkey calling ability, to buying new decoys, to sighting in my shotgun, I did everything imaginable to get prepared for this year’s turkey season.


Season rolled around and I was absolutely pumped to get to the woods and watch the morning come alive! Unfortunately, my first day of hunting was plagued with high wind gusts and cold temperatures. I did not see or hear a single turkey! Then, I was out of town for more than five days of Missouri’s season, and it seemed like the weather just kept getting worse, which created bad hunting conditions.


Finally, it was down to the last day of season, and I was beyond worried that I would not get to fill my tag. That final morning came, and the turkeys were gobbling everywhere! I was blessed to be able to harvest a big gobbler at 7 o’clock on the last day of season.


FFA members, I was discouraged many times this season. It would have been easy for me to throw in the towel and give up on something that I loved and cared about, but I stayed to the very last day. Sometimes, not giving up, and sticking to the bitter end will help you find success. Don’t give up, and happy hunting, FFA members!

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This is a No-‘Comfort-Zone’ Zone

Ocean air, salty hair? More like no air, sweaty hair. Ah, FFA Camp. The most wonderful event of the summer. A time of growing, leadership and meeting new people.


This summer, many FFA members will have the opportunity of attending Camp Rising Sun, where they will learn how to be Linked to Lead. It can be easy to regret coming to camp. You’re forced to stay in a wooden cabin with strangers and no air conditioning for nearly a week. You step off of a bus into what seems like the middle of nowhere, surrounded by strangers, and that doesn’t seem like a great time to most. Yet, this is where growth happens – out of your comfort zone.


Although I never had the opportunity of going to FFA Camp, I spent a weekend of my summer before senior year at Area Officer Institute (AOI) at Camp Rising Sun, where we attended workshops and presentations to learn how to be the best leaders we could be. I imagine my experience to be similar to those attending their first time at camp.


I was scared. It was miserably hot and I looked an absolute mess in front of all these people I had never met. By the end of the first day, I was ready to go home. It was too hot, and I didn’t want to play in the ag Olympics anymore. I thought to myself, “What if these people are judging me?”I was leaving butt prints of sweat everywhere I went, and I couldn’t kick a ball to save my life. I was over it.


Looking back on AOI, I don’t remember much besides these few details, but that’s because I let them take over. I was so wrapped up in my own misery that I didn’t allow myself to have as great of a time as I could have. I now wish I had valued my time at AOI and focused more on the talented speakers and presenters that stood before me. You can learn so much in FFA, but you have to be willing.


This summer, whether you are attending FFA camp or not, I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone. Take a risk. Learn something new.


So many opportunities in FFA will lead you to great things. Don’t let your fears or doubts get the best of you. It is easy to pass up an opportunity because you are scared of what might happen. Instead of thinking of all the things that could go wrong, think of what could go right. The only hindrance to success is your own comfort zone.


In FFA, you can learn great things, meet wonderful people, and have loads of fun. So step out of your comfort zone, have a great summer, and make the most of your time as an FFA member!

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Find Your Best

Jessica Janorschke

Jessica Janorschke – VP

Tired, alone, and scared. You can bet that’s how I felt at five in the morning at the top of a mountain. I was in the middle of nowhere, Arizona, and I, along with 400 others, was about to run 26.2 miles. With clammy hands and a pounding heartbeat, I questioned my decision to run a marathon. When the race finally began and I started putting one foot in front of the other, my fears dissolved. Moving silently through the morning, each runners’ feet pounded to the beat of their own drum.


As another school year closes and summer begins, we are faced with the decision of simply coasting or finding opportunities to discover our beat. Whether you are preparing a speech at Public Speaking Academy, are forging new connections with members from across Missouri at FFA Camp, or are preparing for the state fair with your supervised agricultural experience, this summer provides the opportunity to better yourself. Our journey in the blue jacket is a marathon and each summer a new leg of the race begins.


Missouri FFA members, it’s natural to be nervous at the beginning of a new adventure, believe me, I’ve been there. It’s in those moments outside of our comfort zones that we grow the most. When planting a seed, we don’t look at the seed for what it is, we look at it for what it can be. I challenge you to immerse yourself in new opportunities this season and work to be the best you that ever has been.

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