MUSCATINE, Iowa–As part of their annual National FFA week celebrations, Muscatine High School’s FFA chapter invited regional and state FFA leaders to visit Feb. 23. Southeast State Vice President Kobe Boysen and Southeast District South Vice President Lydia Fisher, both of Wapello, came to lead students through a series of hands on leadership activities and to share with them the opportunities FFA provides for students.
Kobe and Lydia spent much of the day at Muscatine High School, working with several classes of agriculture students. The pair led students through several activities, including doing skits, drawing from oral directions, and a leading and following group activity. Through these fun tasks, they hoped to teach participants about the importance of clear verbal and nonverbal communication, giving good directions, and working their hardest in leadership roles even if not all of their efforts receive recognition. At the end of class, Kobe and Lydia also discussed the process of getting elected to sub-district, district, and state leadership positions and what students could expect if they attend the state FFA convention either in person or virtually via Zoom.
For Alexis Moeller, a senior FFA student who has attended presentations by FFA’s leaders each year, she found the experience enjoyable and hoped that it would help younger FFA members see what they can get involved with as they grow within the organization. “I think they’re very patient and very helpful, especially for the younger kids,” said Alexis of the two FFA leaders. “I appreciated it.”
For Alexis, the visit also helped her as she prepares to compete in radio broadcasting at the district competition after earning second place at sub-districts, in which she took pride in. “It felt nice to know that my work showed,” she explained. One of the leaders in attendance earned first in the category and offered some tips to Alexis, which, along with practice with real radio broadcasters, helped her prepare for her next competition Mar. 6.
Observing her students interact with Kobe and Lydia, Hannah Garland, a student teacher from Iowa State University working with Muscatine High School teacher Sam Paul, found the day’s events very beneficial. “I think it’s a really good experience for them,” she remarked: “They get to learn the different leadership styles. It also broadens their horizons and shows them what FFA can do for them.”
As Garland has worked with Paul’s classes, she has valued the opportunity to work with so many students interested in agriculture. “It’s been really fun to get to work with them,” she shared. “Just the number of students interested in agriculture, it’s fun to see,” she added.
Following the conclusion of FFA Week, many Muscatine FFA members look forward to continuing their contest season at Districts Mar. 6. At that time, they will also get to participate in leadership elections. Some of them may choose to follow in the footsteps of Kobe and Lydia and try their hand at helping to run FFA at a higher level themselves.