The road to nationals

Published 9:23 am Thursday, November 15, 2018

Local FFA students attend national convention in Indianapolis


By Cassidy Napier

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Jessamine County FFA Reporter

Last month, Jessamine County Future Farmers of America took a select group of student to the 91st Annual National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis,Indiana.

Students who wished to attend needed to submit an application and pass two periodic grade checks in order to be eligible. Those in attendance were Ashley Smith, Jessica Doolin, Kyley Shinall, Cassidy Napier, Dakota Walton, Katelyn Scales, Paige Harrod, Emily Lynch, Kiersten Hoskins, Haley Searcy, Addie White, Tyler Banks, Rachel Archer, Madison Bruner, Zack Maxey, and Morgan Berryman.

During the event, Students had the opportunity to attend three different industry tours as part of their journey up to Indianapolis. These tours included Whayne Supply Company, The Bluegrass Stockyards in Lexington and Bi-Water Farms in Georgetown. There was a multitude of opportunities for these students in Indianapolis such as College and Career Fairs, leadership workshops, and FFA general sessions. These offered students the chance to see how FFA can impact more than just their community.

Ashley Smith, a member in attendance, states “I’ve been able to see how FFA has impacted others’ lives. Not only do you see over 60,000 FFA members but you get to hear real life experiences.”

Jessamine County also had two competing parties at the national competitions. The first was the Jessamine County FFA Agricultural Issues Team who placed third in the Nation. The second national competitor was Cassidy Napier who competed in the National FFA Talent Contest.

Napier performed four different times at three different places throughout the convention. She performed numerous songs such as Warrior by Demi Lovato, Footprints in the Sand by Leona Lewis, and Somewhere over the Rainbow by Judy Garland. This includes the stage at the Indiana Convention Center, and a stage in the Foyer of Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Napier was also chosen as the entertainment for the National Creed Speaking Awards Banquet. To be able to participate in the National FFA Talent Contest, Napier was required to send in a video audition where only the top 52 in the country were selected to perform.

Three Jessamine County FFA Members also earned their American FFA Degree, which is the highest honor the FFA can bestow upon its members. Those members were Josiah Renner, Jordan McKinney and Matthew Demoss-Hale.

Josiah Renner, an American Degree recipient, states “It is an honor to receive this degree and it is a true testament to my years in FFA, that when you work for something – it is possible.”

These students were able to be given the opportunity to attend this event due in part to the help from the Jessamine County FFA Alumni.