Update: June 2011

Helping out our FFA family
This spring, weather has dominated the headlines of many local communities. From forest fires to tornadoes to floods, many regions have been dealing with Mother Nature and her impact.

Many of you may be wondering how your fellow FFA chapters have been affected by these recent events and how you can help. Visit the Natural Disaster Recovery Efforts webpage on ffa.org for a list of FFA chapters impacted. You can then contact the state FFA association of the chapter you'd like to help for more information. Or contact local chapters of the American Red Cross or the United Way in the affected areas. If your chapter was recently affected by natural disaster, and you'd like to be added to the list, e-mail asauceda@ffa.org.

Got a nose for news?
The National FFA Organization is now accepting applications for the 2011 national FFA convention newsroom staff.  If you are a college student looking for some hands-on experience with feature writing, media relations, and/or photography, apply today! Click this link to apply. The deadline for application has been extended until Monday, June 27, 2011.

Look who’s talking…at national convention this year!
Check out this year’s keynote convention speakers and learn how to get started with planning.

2011 important due dates to remember
Online CDE declaration: June 1
American Degree/Star application: June 15
Distinguished Service Citations application: June 15
Honorary American Degree application: June 15
National Chapter Awards application: June 15
VIP Awards application: June 15
Agri-Entrepreneurship application: July 15
Agriscience Student application: July 15
Proficiency award application: July 15
Ag Issues CDE Portfolio (new deadline in 2011): Aug. 15
Prepared Public Speaking CDE Manuscript: Aug. 15
Online CDE Certification and Waivers (new deadline in 2011): Sept. 15
Ag Communications CDE Proposal, Job Interview CDE Resume/Cover Letter and Marketing Plan CDE Written Plan: Sept. 15
Online CDE Add/Deletes (no onsite form to submit): Oct. 18 (Noon, EST)

Agriscience Deadlines
All Agriscience Fair declarations should have been completed by June 1. Don’t forget to certify your entries by Aug. 15. Submission of fair applications with all documentation attached must be postmarked to the National FFA Center on or before Aug. 15. This includes your waiver forms.

Show us your talent!
The online applications for the 2011 National FFA Band, Chorus and Talent will be open until July 1. These programs are a great way for FFA members to come together and shine at the national convention. Applying is easy! Just go to www.ffa.org and click on national convention. Send any questions to bct@ffa.org.

PALS resources now online
Go to ffa.learn.com to find all of the updated, free PALS lessons. These are great to use in your chapter’s mentoring program to increase both the mentor’s and mentee’s agricultural literacy and leadership skills.

Nominations for 2011 National Officer Nominating Committee open through Aug. 1
The National FFA is currently accepting nominations for student members to serve on the 2011 National Officer Nominating Committee during the national FFA convention this October. This group will be responsible for evaluating all national officer candidates and selecting those who will serve for 2011-2012. To nominate a deserving individual, log in to MyFFA and look for the National Officer Nominating Committee section. Click on the link and follow all instructions to submit your nominee. Nominations will be accepted through Aug. 1.

FFA volunteer convention judges needed
The National FFA is accepting judging nominations for this year’s 2011 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Ind. Agricultural Proficiency and Stars Over America awards will be judged Thursday, Oct. 20. (Proficiency and Star judges will be invited to an awards luncheon that day.) Agriscience Awards will be judged on Thursday, Oct. 20. National Chapter Awards will be judged on Wednesday, Oct. 19.

Convention judging is voluntary. FFA does not cover any judging expenses. Submit nominations on the form located here.  Questions? E-mail judges@ffa.org.

You Talk. We Listen.
Last fall, National FFA sought feedback from stakeholders on some of the organization’s key programs. The organization listened and has been working on responding to the issues that were identified. For the most up-to-date information on how we are addressing these issues, visit the You Talk. We Listen webpage on ffa.org. The website will continually be updated as progress is made on each initiative and will also allow you to continue to share your thoughts and concerns with the organization.

Coming soon: Cotton surcharge
The Official FFA Jacket will have a $3 per jacket surcharge applied to all purchases effective Sept. 1, 2011.  This surcharge is a direct result of increased costs resulting from an ongoing global cotton shortage due to natural disasters across Asia in the last 12 months and the increased demand for cotton in growing markets. With the price per bale hitting nearly $2 this spring, the price of cotton has more than doubled in the last year, resulting in a 68 percent increase in corduroy in comparison to a year ago.

The price of the jacket will remain at $49 plus a $3 surcharge during the 2011-2012 school year, and we are anticipating a surcharge in the $4.50-$6 range to continue in the 2012-2013 school year.  The surcharge is a direct pass through to the customer of the raw cost increase of the cotton we use to produce our corduroy.

A surcharge is not uncommon and should be familiar to our customers who purchased in the fall 2008.  At that time, a fuel surcharge was applied due to skyrocketing fuel prices and then removed the following year as the price of fuel returned to normal.  Ultimately the goal is to maintain the price of the jacket at $49 once the cost of cotton normalizes, which industry analysts expect to happen in the next 12-24 months.

To purchase an Official FFA Jacket, visit Shop FFA.  Looking for more than one jacket? Consider the 10 Official Jackets Promotional Set, a $40 savings.

Be on the lookout for the Look Book
This fall, National FFA will no longer produce the Blue apparel catalog.  Instead, all members will receive the Blue Look Book, a 12-page insert in the September issue of the newly redesigned FFA New Horizons.  The look book will feature the National FFA Officer team in select apparel and accessories, with all products available online at Shop FFA.

Design your own FFA apparel
Want to create your own FFA clothing? The FFA Design Studio allows you to create designs by you for you.  Whether you need one or more items, this easy-to-use website on Shop FFA has all the tools you need to create high-quality personalized apparel for fundraisers, community projects, member incentives and volunteer recognition.  Choose from five garment styles, hundreds of design elements and multiple colors. Allow two weeks for delivery.

New arrivals at Shop FFA
Visit the new arrival section on Shop FFA for the latest trends in FFA spirit wear. Now featured are new tees, pants and shorts in the freshest of spring colors and great new graphics.

The FFA Chapter Tee Design Contest winners have been announced. Visit the FFA Chapter Tee section on Shop FFA to get your favorite shirt today.

Handbook and Manual are available
The Official FFA Manual and Official FFA Student Handbook are now available. The Official Handbook has been reorganized and streamlined with classroom instruction in mind. The handbook features hundreds of photos demonstrating FFA in action and several profiles of former members.

To better reflect classroom needs, the Official Student Handbook Advisors Guide DVD replaces the old Advisor’s Guide to the FFA Student Handbook.  The Advisor’s Guide DVD Companion includes 25 minutes of content broken into nine chapters.  This newly developed DVD will bring the excitement and FFA spirit to your classroom – featuring the history of FFA, basic FFA knowledge, examples of opening and closing ceremonies, recitation of the FFA Creed and so much more! Lesson plans and PowerPoint presentations that complement the Official FFA Student Handbook can be found online at ffa.learn.com

Get these bundled classroom resources
Looking for classroom resources to improve your chapter operations? Power Pack of Leadership Essentials offers 10 products for $139, a 20 percent savings.  Products include: Leadership on the Go, Mpower, Strategies for Great Teaching, FFA Game – Blue Edition, 2011 Official FFA Student Handbook, Official Student Handbook Advisors Guide DVD, and the Official FFA Manual.  To order, go to Shop FFA or call 888-332-2668 and ask your FFA customer service representative for the Power Pack of Leadership Essentials product number TB-11.​​​