FFA Area 2 ContestsFeb 17, 2023 10:44AM ● By Ethan Hoffmann
The group of FFA members that competed at the Area Contests. (L to R) Melanie Wilde, Vivian Widmier, Briley Mikesell, Brynn Peterson, Sylvie Peterson, Lilly Tatton, Timber Peterson, Gavin Turner, Payton Orn, Henry Rose, Melanie Bybee. Courtesy photo
On Jan. 25, the Future Farmers of America branch of Morgan High School had the opportunity to attend Area 2 Contests at the Davis School District Offices. In context, area contests are events in which FFA members compete in their specific events against other schools in their designated state or area.
The advisors of FFA are Hannah Giles and Shyanne Rees, the agricultural education teachers at MHS. However, Ray Little, the mayor of Morgan County, helps coach the parliamentary procedure team. “The FFA Organization really is an amazing place to help students gain confidence and skills to assist them throughout their entire lives,” said Giles. “I absolutely love being able to help these dedicated kids become amazing adults. They put in a lot of time and effort to compete and do well in their events. I’m very proud of them for what they have accomplished.”
While there isn’t a defective milk sampling contest like the one featured in the comedy “Napoleon Dynamite,” there are plenty of other interesting FFA events to be discovered at Area 2 Contests, and each has a completely different description. The events and their descriptions are found below.
In Parliamentary Procedure, students work as a team of six to complete a demo of debate that is 11 minutes long. During the debate, the contestants need to use parliamentary law, both effectively and correctly, to accomplish the event. Following, they are asked questions about the demo and how parliamentary law was used.
Creed Speaking, while one of the simpler events, is no less challenging. In this test, 9th and 10th grade members must memorize and recite the FFA Creed that E.M. Tiffany wrote. They are judged based on the overall presentation of the Creed and how accurate they are in reciting it word for word. Following, they are asked questions related back to the Creed.
Prepared Public Speaking is fairly straightforward. Students in this event write and memorize a six to eight minute speech. They are judged based on how well they can stick to the script they have written and how the information is presented. They then are asked questions based on what they have written and said during the event.
Extemporaneous Public Speaking is a step above the previous challenge. Students that compete in this event draw three topics randomly that have some relation to agriculture. Then they select one of the topics they drew and are given 30 minutes to prepare a four to six minute speech about the topic. After they present, they are asked questions based on their speech.
For Farm Bureau Discussion Meet, FFA members have a discussion with other members from other chapters in the area. These discussions can be about a variety of different subjects but are mainly about problems facing the agriculture industry and ways to potentially solve them with the help of the Farm Bureau Organization. They are judged based on how well they can discuss with other members and the ideas they bring forward.
Last but not least, Proficiency Awards are given to students that excel in certain areas of agriculture. These awards are based on projects they raise, grow or even jobs they work in the agriculture industry.
“Kids that compete in these contests practice their public speaking abilities greatly and learn how to think on their feet when asked questions,” said Giles. “They gain leadership skills that can help them throughout the rest of their lives. These skills range from being able to communicate their thoughts clearly, to developing their ability to work with others. The two local girls that won awards in our area have amazing projects in swine and sheep production.”
Awards and qualifiers: Sylvie Peterson, Brynn Peterson, Lilly Tatton, Briley Mikesell, Melanie Wilde and Vivian Widmier for Parliamentary Procedure Team 1st Place (State Qualifier); Chloee Clark for Prepared Public Speaking 1st Place (State Qualifier); 1st Place, Gavin Turner and 2nd Place, Timber Peterson for Farm Bureau Discussion Meet (Both State Qualifiers); Payton Orn (State Qualifier) and 3rd Place, Henry Rose for Creed Speaking; 3rd Place, Melanie Bybee for Extemporaneous Public Speaking; Timber Peterson (State Qualifier) for Proficiency Award Sheep Production; Maggie Shupe (State Qualifier) for Proficiency Award Swine Production.