Think back with me to your first national convention. That could’ve been four or more years ago for some of us but for others it may have been just a couple of weeks ago. Now as you are thinking of this great experience what was encompassed in that trip? Did you go to compete, go to tour the agriculture elsewhere, or were you the extra person to fill up a room? Travel back in time with me to my first convention just a short four years ago, and boy was I so excited to go. I was allowed to go just to fill up a room to help the competing team with expenses. My experience at that first convention in Indiana, Indianapolis was wrapped around my chapter’s food science team competing. I was just an extra person to fill the van while they were engulfed in their competition however, I still had the best time there attending almost all the sessions and spending countless hours in the Expo Hall. Those sessions were full of loud energizing music, fog, lasers, lights and the overwhelming sea of overly pumped blue jacketed members. I was so amazed at the sheer volume of blue and gold jackets that covered downtown Indy along with all of the wonderful support from the citizens of Indy. I loved listening to the National Officers speak empowering words with such passion and love for this organization and had a great time; however I was just a filler. No purpose besides to enjoy myself.
Now fast forward to this past October where I had the honor of serving along with 11 other wonderful individuals as the Florida FFA Delegates. I was super blessed to spend countless hours working with delegates from all over this great nation to help improve this organization. I was part of the process that in the past has brought forth great changes such as changing our name from the Future Farmers of America to the National FFA Organization to stay current with our diversified membership and 50 years this year the delegation voted to merge the NFA with the FFA! I was a part of this process and it drove my passion for this organization even further than before. I was no longer just a filler but rather there to make an impact. I was able to make positive differences for this organization.[blockquote size=”full” align=”left” byline=”Matthew”]I was just an extra person to fill the van while they were engulfed in their competition however, I still had the best time there attending almost all the sessions and spending countless hours in the Expo Hall.[/blockquote]
Now let’s flip back to your experience, more specifically this past convention. One thing I didn’t realize my first convention when I thought I was nothing but a filler, was that I was still making an impact even though I didn’t see it then. If you went to this year’s national convention, you made an impact. You had a purpose there. Whether it was to compete and represent the Florida FFA Association, you made an impact. You could have gone this past week to visit multiple places and see agriculture in Kentucky you made an impact, you learned some awesome lessons that you can take back to your chapter. Maybe you went just to do nothing besides be an attendee, you had a purpose and made and impact. From cheering on our national officers and bringing a smile to their faces or by helping out a nervous speaker know that we are caring individuals and loved to hear them speak, you made and impact.
Always remember you have a purpose and are there to make an impact. If you weren’t able to attend this past convention and would like to walk the sessions you can find each session in the link below.
Area 3 State Vice President