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FFA Members Attend Washington Leadership Conference

FFA Members Attend Washington Leadership Conference 

By Kayla Jiras Clear Creek Amana Secretary 

For the past 50 years, FFA members from across the country have converged in Washington, D.C., in the summer to evaluate their personal skills and interests, develop leadership talent, and create service plans during the Washington Leadership Conference, which will make a difference in their communities.

This year is no different. Created in 1969 and held annually, the conference begins today June 4 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel. More than 2,300 students are registered for the 2019 Washington Leadership Conference, the second-largest student experience that the National FFA Organization hosts each year. The Clear Creek Amana FFA Chapter was involved in week 2 of the seven week conference rotation. Jackson Tandy and Kyle Pitlick represented Clear Creek Amana FFA at Washington Leadership Conference from June 18-June 23. 

FFA members can attend the conference during one of seven weeks through July 27.  They will spend the week under the guidance of professionals, counselors and FFA staff. In workshops, seminars and small groups, members will focus on identifying and developing their personal strengths and goals while undergoing comprehensive leadership training that will help them guide their local FFA chapters. The capstone of the event will be a civic engagement activity where participants apply what they have learned to a hands-on activity. 

The hands-on learning activity that Jackson Tandy and Kyle Pitlick took part in was packaging over 7,000 oatmeal based breakfast meals for people in need. The students also worked on letters to sent to our military troops and decorating brown grocery bags for one of the local soup kitchens in the Washington D. C. area. 

Members will also analyze the needs of their communities, develop wide-ranging and high-impact community service initiatives and implement their plans with the help of their FFA chapters upon return home. Students in recent years have promoted agricultural literacy; brought attention to abuse; collected and distributed shoes to individuals in Haiti; created a hunger awareness plan and more. Jackson Tandy a Clear Creek Amana FFA Junior wants to implement a trash clean up program for the Clear Creek Amana high school parking lot. In hopes of encouraging his classmates to take pride in their school and the environment around them. Kyle Pitlick a Clear Creek Amana FFA senior wants to focus on a community garden. The FFA members would plant the garden tend to it during the summer and allow community members to use the produce or serve the produce as a healthy option in the school cafeteria. The boys collectively want to work with other student groups in the high school to implement a community wide project. 

FFA members experienced the history of the nation’s capital and tour landmarks including the Washington Monument, the National Mall, Arlington National Cemetery and the U.S. Capitol, among others. Members had an opportunity to participate in congressional visits during the week with Senator Joni Ernst