Can I Do That?
We talked to Emily Marguerite about her involvement in the National FFA Organization in this latest column Can I Do That? where we talk to people involved with some cool stuff! Read on to see what the FFA is all about and see if YOU want to get involved!
1. For those who don't know, can you explain what the National FFA Organization is all about?
The FFA use to be called the Future Farmers of America, and many people still know us as that. But in reality, we do much more than 'farm' activities, like the Parliamentary Procedure team I am on. FFA is all about leadership opportunities, they strive to make become much more than we are. And we need more true leaders in this world. We do everything from volunteer work, to presentations, to competitions. But it’s not all work-we have plenty of fun too!
2. How did you become involved?
I began eating in the 'ag room' two years ago. I was having problems with my soon to be ex-best friend. I found a room of an amazing people, and began to break out of my shell. Then a really close friend of mine, Addie, came to me freaking out about life in generally. She was overwhelmed with life-she just couldn't juggle sports, school, and FFA competitions. She begged me to take her place in Parly-Pro (Parliamentary Procedure), and I agreed. I actually joined a team before I joined the organization!
3. What are some accomplishments you've received being involved with FFA?
There are so many! I placed first in Agricultural Communication individually at the state level, my team placed second. That itself was an amazing achievement for a girl who only a year before could not public speak at all. At the New York State Fair, my team placed second in Nursery & Landscape, a competition that we had decided to enter in the night before! We were so excited, and we got to move onto the Big E (Also known as the Eastern conference, it is a fair for many eastern states)! We got 4th place at Big E, which was amazing, since we were competing against the best. I also received the Communication Award from my chapter. Recently, my chapter received the convention bid, meaning that we will hold the state convention at my school. It's such a big honor, and I was committee chairperson!
But really what I am proud of is how I've changed. I was literally the quietest person in my grade, and a one-person friend, until I joined. In only a couple of months I became a totally different person! I talk a lot more now, and I have the confidence I needed to do well in life. It’s all thanks to this amazing organization!
4. You visited Ireland last year with the FFA. How was that experience? What are some things you got to do and/or see?
Ireland was the most amazing thing in my entire life. I got back, and I just could not believe what I had done. We went to Blarney Castle (I got to kiss the stone!), several other castles, the Cliffs of Moor! The real thing for me though was how much I learned about the other people in the chapter, and the relationships that I built with them. And to see a culture so different from mine really opened my eyes. I realized that the United States isn't perfect- a huge step from the extremely nationalistic girl I use to be.
5. Why do you think this is something people should get involved with?
This organization is everything to me! It awoken in me the fact that I could be so much more, and I am amazed every day with what I can do and actually accomplish. I honestly think that everybody needs to get involved in something-whether it be FFA, FBLC, FCCLA or just a local organization like Art Club, Theater Club, or Magna Club. Life is about meeting people, and that’s impossible if you aren’t doing anything!
If you think you're involved with something cool, message us on myspace with the subject line: Can I Do That? and we'll get back to you if we're interested.
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