SYRACUSE, NY – New York State FFA Association is hosting the 91st annual State FFA Convention on May 5 - 7, 2016 at the OnCenter in Syracuse, NY. This year’s convention theme is Imprint, chosen by the six NYS FFA officers. The three day convention brings together more than 1,000 FFA members across New York from nearly 100 different schools.
The first day of convention, Thursday, May 5, FFA members will participate in a Day of Service. Students will visit one of the 14 different Day of Service work sites where they will work with fellow FFA members, community members, and volunteers to make their imprint on Syracuse. Service projects include: agricultural literacy at downtown Syracuse schools; work with Cornell Cooperative Extension with Earth Corps; flower box and bat house construction; maintenance at the FFA building at the State Fairgrounds; meal packing at the Food Bank of Central New York; house construction with Habitat for Humanity; tree planting at Onondaga Park; serving and preparing food at the Samaritan Center; upkeep on the Witter Agriculture Museum at the State Fairgrounds; and landscaping, meal packing and making survival bracelets onsite at the OnCenter.
Throughout the rest of convention FFA members will compete in career and leadership development contests, get recognized on stage for their work with their hands on agricultural projects, and hear from the National FFA President Taylor McNeel. Keynote speaker Kyle Scheele will address attendees and share his stories about being an inspiring speaker, writer, and how he challenges teenagers to live better stories. The State FFA Officers will lead six general sessions where they will announce contest winners, recognize their families and teachers for their support, and give retiring addresses where they reflect on how they’ve grown as a state officer and how FFA members can leave an IMPRINT on their chapters. The 2015-16 New York State FFA Officers include: president, Sara Millspaugh from Albion; vice president, Emma Rose Wegner from Schoharie; secretary, Tricia Jordan from Greenwich; treasurer, Kaylah Gulley from Greenwich; reporter, Erin Langdale from Warwick; and, sentinel, Lindsey Palmer from Hamilton.
FFA members will also have several opportunities to tour local businesses and colleges, as well as participate in career and leadership development workshops. The Career and Engagement Expo boasts several business and industry partners, several colleges and universities, and live performances from the Rosamond Gifford Zoo’s Zoo to You program, and television chef Julie Taboulie.
On Saturday, more than 100 FFA members will earn their Empire Degrees – the highest state-level FFA degree a member can achieve. Each student will get recognized onstage and receive a certificate and an Empire Degree gold chain that adorns their FFA jackets.
The New York State FFA Association is a youth organization that provides premiere leadership, personal growth and career success opportunities to students enrolled in agricultural education. It is a part of the National FFA Organization which boasts over a half of a million members nationally. New York agricultural education is found in public, private and BOCES schools throughout the state, offering instruction in courses ranging from small animal care to farm business management and from pre-veterinary science to natural resources management. For more information regarding New York FFA and the 91st annual convention please visit us at www.nysffa.org.