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 FFA Buzz

FFA Volunteer Judges Sought
The National FFA Organization is accepting volunteer judge nominations for the agricultural proficiency awards; agriscience, agriscience student and agriscience teacher awards; and national chapter awards at the 2009 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Ind., this fall.

  • Agricultural proficiency and Star awards judging takes place on Thurs., Oct. 22, 2009.  Proficiency and Star judges will be invited to an awards luncheon on that day.
  • Agriscience awards judging takes place on Wed., Oct. 21 and Thurs., Oct. 22, 2009.
  • Agriscience Teacher Awards judging takes place on Fri., Oct. 23, 2009. 
  • National Chapter Awards judging takes place on Wed., Oct. 21, 2009. 

Convention judging is voluntary. FFA is unable to cover expenses for the judges. 

Log on to ffa.org and click on the Convention Judges Nomination Form to submit nominations. Mail completed forms to National FFA Organization, Attn. Teri Buchholtz, P.O. Box 68960, Indianapolis, IN 46268-0960 or fax to 317-802-5419.

FFA New Horizons Classroom Resource Now Available
Looking for a way to incorporate each issue of FFA New Horizons into your classroom instruction? Well, look no further…the new FFA New Horizons Teaching Guide is now available on the Ag Educators Workroom Web page at ffa.org and on www.ffanewhorizons.org. This 4-page online guide provides activities, discussion questions, teaching tips, additional links and more related to each issue of the printed magazine. For April, we take a look at careers in veterinary medicine, give you the scoop on what’s new with the Partners in Active Learning Support program (PALS) and show you how to make a Living to Serve plan a reality. The April issue of FFA New Horizons began mailing last week. Be on the lookout for your free chapter copy, compliments of the National FFA Organization. You can also access a virtual copy of the magazine on www.ffanewhorizons.org. Contact Julie Woodard at 317-802-4310 if you have questions.

National Chapter Awards Update
Beginning this year, information packets for the national chapter program will be sent out digitally. Star placing, as well as national convention information, will be provided via a link that will be e-mailed directly to advisors. Please be sure to include your e-mail address on your application to ensure delivery. Schools that do not have e-mail addresses on file by the judging period (the last week of July) will need to contact state staff in order to receive their link. Contact Tyler Easton at 317-802-4335.

Celebrate Ag Day, March 20
The next generation of agricultural leaders will join the Agriculture Council of America in celebrating the industry during National Ag Day on March 20, 2009. Student representatives from FFA, 4-H, and AFA from across the country will meet with their congressional representatives and carry the Ag Day message to Capitol Hill. For more information about how your chapter can celebrate Ag Day, visit www.agday.org.

New Agri-Entrepreneur Mentoring Program
Do you have students whose Agri-Enterprise would benefit from a mentor? Someone to give them a helping hand to achieve their business goals and better compete in the Agri-Entrepreneurship award program? If so, please send their names to dsellers@ffa.org. The Agri-Entrepreneurship award program is teaming up with the FFA Alumni to match alumni members with FFA members who have their own business. The mentors will give guidance in general business as well as (when possible) industry-specific information.

From the National Days of Service Office
Global Youth Service Day is the largest annual service event in the world. GYSD highlights and celebrates the difference youth make in their communities year-round through community service and service-learning. On April 24-26, 2009, millions of young people will participate in and lead service projects in all 50 states and in more than 100 countries around the world. These young people, working with their families, schools, community organizations, faith-based communities and businesses, will improve their communities by addressing critical issues such as global climate change, education and illiteracy, poverty, health, hunger and homelessness. Learn more about GYSD, download planning resources, and register your project at www.YSA.org/GYSD. Remember to log your service hours into the Million Hour Challenge database at www.ffa.org/mhc.

Million Hour Challenge Update
The Million Hour Challenge encourages members across the country to improve their communities through civic engagement. Project hours contributed by members and advisors are captured to provide recognition within FFA as well as in the communities themselves. Awards will be given during the 2009 National FFA Convention to the chapters having the greatest number of community service hours in the following categories:  Environment, Government, Social/Human Service, Healthy Lifestyles, and Education. Eligible project hours are those earned during the Oct. 2, 2008 to Oct. 1, 2009 period. Hours from all programs above are eligible for the Million Hour Challenge. Please remember, hours must be entered by advisors into the Million Hour Challenge database to earn credit. Million Hour Challenge is sponsored by Toyota as a special project of the National FFA Foundation.
 
For more program information, contact the Million Hour Challenge office at mhc@ffa.org or 317-802-4413.

The Latest from the LifeKnowledge® Center for Agricultural Education -
LK Webinar

You have heard about LifeKnowledge® Online and you know it is a great resource; however, you haven’t had the time to learn about all the amazing tools located inside. Join us on March 24, 2009, at 6 p.m. EST for a free, live webinar to discover all the tools, guides and plans inside LifeKnowledge Online. Be on the lookout for additional LifeKnowledge University webinars, designed to provide you with professional development and training opportunities on LifeKnowledge educational materials and resources at your convenience. Email lkonline@ffa.org to register for this webinar by March 24, 2009, or for more information about LifeKnowledge, visit lifeknowledge.ffa.org.

LK Podcasts
The LifeKnowledge Center for Agricultural Education launched its first podcast on Tues., Feb. 24, 2009. Designed with the active teacher in mind, LifeKnowledge in Action podcasts bring the latest from LifeKnowledge directly to you.

Each episode of LifeKnowledge in Action will focus on facilitating premier leadership, personal growth and career success as we work together in advancing the integration of LifeKnowledge in local agricultural education classrooms. Subscribe to the podcast and get audio downloads sent directly to your iTunes account or to your preferred feed reader. Visit lifeknowledge.ffa.org for more information.

2009 National FFA Convention News
2009 National FFA Convention housing for chapters is now open. Advisors need to log in to their MyFFA account to get the hotel listing.  Contact Ellen Williams at 317-802-4269 for more information.