SPRINGFIELD – Members of the Olympia FFA Chapter attended the 88th Annual Illinois State FFA Convention on June 14-16 along with 3,500 other FFA members, advisors, and guests.
“BUILD” was the theme of the three-day event which recognizes annual successes of Illinois FFA members, elects the major state officer team, and celebrates agriculture. Students at the convention were greeted with activities including an exhibit hall featuring colleges and businesses, an evening dance and talent show, and an opportunity to engage in the history of Illinois’ capital city. Olympia FFA President, Ashley Miller, stated that she enjoyed listening to retiring addresses where she learned strength and leadership skills along with how to collaborate as a team and bonding with the other FFA members. Karmen Gluek and Brock Gottschalk, both vice-presidents of the Olympia FFA chapter, said that they learned different ways to publicize what our chapter is doing to the other students in the school, such as starting an Instagram. The convention program featured keynote presentations by National FFA Secretary Nick Baker and National Football League Chaplain and former player Reverend Ray McElroy. Attendees were also entertained by Mark Hood, a former contestant on “The Voice” as well as an Illinois FFA alumnus from Chicago.
During the convention, the following awards were presented to the Olympia FFA chapter:
Foundation Club Award Recipient: The Olympia FFA chapter was recognized for coordinating a chapter campaign for the Illinois Foundation FFA which raised at least $3,000. The chapter's fundraising total was $3,550. Sarah Zimmerman of Danvers and Laura Rankin of Atlanta, received this award for the chapter.