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Welcome to Wisconsin Association of FFA

Established in 1929, the Wisconsin Association of FFA is an association of the National FFA Organization whose mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. Wisconsin has 255 FFA chapters statewide and over 19,000 members.

The FFA operates on local, state and national levels. Student members belong to chapters organized at the local school district. In order for a school district to charter and maintain an FFA chapter, there must be a certified licensed agricultural educator hired by the school district who then also serves as the chapter advisor.

FFA members are part of a total program in agricultural education, consisting of classroom instruction in agriculture, supervised agricultural experiences where students gain career skills and on the job training and leadership development through the FFA organization.

Wisconsin FFA Center's Weekly Newsletter

WISCONSIN FFA UPDATE - News In Brief
A weekly update on Wisconsin FFA activities from the Wisconsin FFA Center, Inc.

For the week of December 15, 2014 - MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!

1. FFA Membership Roster Payment Due No Later Than January 9, 2015
2. Half-Time Conference Workshops and Request for Students to Bring A Photo of Themselves
3. 2015 Half-Time Conference Advisor Schedule
4. Online FFA District Speaking Contest Registration Now Open
5. District Speaking Contest Reminders
6. Students Participating in FFA Events MUST Be Active FFA Members
7. 2015 Wisconsin FFA Alumni Convention Registration
8. 2015 UW-Madison Collegiate FFA Hockey Extravaganza - Registration Due January 16
9. 2015 FFA Farm Forum Registration Due January 20
10. Co-ops YES! Conference - March 16-17 - Mark Your Calendars!!
11. 2015 National FFA Scholarship Program Update
12. WIsconsin FFA State Degree Application Online through Ag Career Network
13. Wisconsin FFA State Star Applicants - Applications Due February 2, 2015
14. American Degree Eligibility
15. Encourage Members to Apply for State FFA Honors Band or Chorus
16. Did You Know?
17. Quote of the Week
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Upcoming Deadlines and Activities
Remember these important dates:
Dec. 22 - Jan. 2 Wisconsin FFA Center Christmas Break
January 9-10 2015 FFA Half-Time Conference - Holiday Inn and Convention Center - Stevens Point
January 9 Wisconsin FFA Center Board Meeting - Stevens Point
January 9 Wisconsin Association of FFA Board Meeting - Stevens Point
January 9 WAAE Board Meeting - Stevens Point
January 15 District Speaking Contests Begin - Check listing on Wisconsin FFA website
January 15 Marshfield Parliamentary Procedure Invitational
Janaury 27-29 National Ag Ed Summit - Indianapolis
Feb. 2 State FFA Degrees - Postmarked - Send to Wisconsin FFA Center
Feb. 6-7 Wisconsin FFA Alumni Convention - Stevens Point
Feb. 12 CTSO Legislative Day - Madison
Feb. 19-20 State FFA Board Meeting - Wisconsin Rapids
Feb. 20 State FFA Proficiency Awards - Postmarked - Send to Wisconsin FFA Center
Feb. 20-21 FFA Farm Forum - Wisconsin Rapids
Feb. 22-28 National FFA Week
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FFA Membership Roster Payment Due No Later Than January 9, 2015
Remember that sending in your payment for your chapter FFA membership dues is just as important as getting your roster submitted by December 1. All membership roster payments are due to the Wisconsin Association of FFA and need to be received to the Business Office at DPI no later than Friday, January 9. Don't have your chapter placed on probation when you worked hard to get your roster submitted on time. Payment must be received and CHECKS MADE PAYABLE TO: WISCONSIN ASSOCIATION OF FFA. Rosters will not be forwarded to National FFA until payment has been received. When making your payment, include both the state and national dues together in one check to DPI.
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Half-Time Conference Workshops and Request for Students to Bring A Photo of Themselves
Attached you will find the descriptions of the workshops that the state officers will be presenting at the Half-Time Conference. There are some new activities the state officers have planned this year.

PLEASE have each of your students coming to the Half-Time Conference bring a photo of themselves. This is important as it will be a part of the Reflections Program on Friday evening.
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2015 Half-Time Conference Advisor Schedule
The 2015 Half-Time Conference has a full schedule for advisors. Below is the schedule of activities for advisors.
Friday, January 9, 2015
10:00 a.m. - Wisconsin FFA Center Board Meeting - Expo 2
1:00 p.m. - WAAE Board of Directors Meeting ? Expo 2
1:00 p.m. - State FFA Board of Directors Meeting ? Wisconsin Room
6:45 p.m. - Advisor Workshop ? Expo 1 - MAQA Training, Bernie O?Rourke, Extension Youth Livestock Specialist
7:00 p.m. - WAAE Publicity Committee ? Bayba Board Room
7:00 p.m. - New Teacher Mentoring ? Wisconsin Room
7:45 p.m. - WAAE Instructional Packets Meeting ? Pointer Room
7:45 p.m. - Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Meeting ? Small Lounge
8:30 p.m. - WAAE Past Presidents Meeting ? Point Brewery Room
9:00 p.m. - SAE Committee Meeting ? Wisconsin Room

Saturday, January 10, 2015
8:00 a.m. - Breakfast ? Expo 3 and 4
8:30 a.m. - Live Binder Meeting ? Wisconsin Room
9:00 a.m. - Curriculum Committee ? Pointer Room
9:00 a.m. - Advisor Workshop - Expo 1 and 2
* Wisconsin Safety Certification ? Cheryl Skjolaas
* Wisconsin State Fair ? Brian Bolan
* Degree and Proficiency Award Application Update
* National Chapter Award ? Paul Larson
10:30 a.m. - Safety Committee Meeting ? Bayba Board Room
12:15 p.m. - Reflections Program ? State FFA Officers ? Expo 3 and 4
12:35 p.m. - Lunch and Final General Session ? Expo 3 and 4
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Online FFA District Speaking Contest Registration Now Open
Don't forget we have an online registration process for all FFA members participating in Wisconsin FFA District Speaking Contests. This is REQUIRED of all chapters competing at the District Level. Registration is due two weeks before your District Contest date....Please see document attached for the two week deadline for each District Contest - Please note these vary.

Substitutions are allowed on site at the contest. HOWEVER NO NEW REGISTRATIONS WILL BE ALLOWED ON SITE. There is a substitution form that you can complete if you have a change at the time of the contest. This will be provided to chapters after the initial registration is complete. You can only substitute for a student's registration....No NEW registrations can be made after the registration deadline. All registrations are coming to the Wisconsin FFA Center first and then are transferred to the District Host.

Follow these steps:
1. Go to the Wisconsin FFA Website http://www.wisconsinffa.org/
2. Click on 2015 District Speaking Contest Online Registration (either on the home page or under Events>Speaking Contests)
3. Enter your CHAPTER NUMBER for both your User Name and Password. UNLESS you have changed your password when you registered for a Wisconsin FFA Conference. This is not your ACN User Name and Password. This is the User name that is your chapter number and your "state" password if you changed it from your chapter number earlier this school year.
4. Indicate the District Contest attending. You must attend the contest in the district in which your chapter is located. I have attached a list for your reference. (This is necessary so we can properly sort the entries for the District Hosts)
5. Include information about the advisor....phone numbers for contact purposes.
6. For each contest you need to list each participant AND their official Membership ID number. Your registration will not be accepted without the proper membership number for each student entered.

If a student is not a member at the time of registration, you MUST go to the Ag Career Network and enter them as a member before registering for District Speaking Contests.

If you only have one entry for a contest, leave the other space blank...The system will accept entries without all name spaces filled as some teams may only have the minimum required team members needed. If a student name is entered however it will require you to submit a membership number before it will be accepted.

At the bottom of the registration pages, please indicate any students who are competing in multiple events so that the District Host can properly schedule everyone and the contest can move forward without delays.

Reminders: Members are only allowed to participate in 2 individual and one team event at the district level. There is a Rule Handbook online at http://www.wisconsinffa.org/events/ of all the rules and procedures. Also Prepared Speaking Manuscripts and Job Interview resumes are due to the district hosts postmarked two weeks before the competition.

Again......Substitutions will be allowed on site....HOWEVER you must complete a substitution form that will be made available online when registrations are received.
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District Speaking Contest Reminders
Some very important reminders for those participating in the District Speaking Contests...
1. Review rules and procedures for the speaking contests in the Official Speaking Competition Handbook online at http://www.wisconsinffa.org/events/. There is a specific handbook that each advisor should have with the rules, procedures and scorecards of each individual speaking event. It is important all participants follow the current updated rules published by the Wisconsin FFA Center.
2. An individual FFA member can only compete in 2 individual events and 1 team event at the district competition. If a member violates this rule, they will be disqualified from all the events they participated in. This is very important that ALL members follow this rule.
3. Creed speakers are only allowed to participate in the creed speaking contest one time as either a 7th, 8th or 9th grader. So if a student participants as an 8th grader, they cannot participate again as a 9th grade. This is one time only participation contest.
4. Chapters are allowed 2 participants/teams in each contest EXCEPT parliamentary procedure. All participants must be active, dues paid members at the time of participation in the district contest.
5. Prepared Speaking Manuscripts and Job Interview Resumes and Cover Letters must be postmarked two weeks before the contest to the district host or 25 points will be deducted for each day it is late (Monday through Friday only).
6. The 2015 DISCUSSION MEET TOPICS are online at http://www.wisconsinffa.org/events/.
7. Participants must wear name badges (about 3"x5") for both Discussion Meet and Parliamentary Procedure contests on which his/her name is legibly printed and visible.
8. Finally, all contestants MUST HAVE PROPER OFFICIAL DRESS if competing. Quiz Bowl can be the only exception at the district and sectional contest. Proper Official Dress is defined in the Speaking Contest Handbook. Make sure to contact your District Host or the Wisconsin FFA Center if you have any questions.

Also, there are no published Extemporaneous topics provided by the Wisconsin FFA however there are four main categories that the topics can come from (based on the rules of National FFA) 1) Agriscience and Technology 2) Agrimarketing and International Agriculture 3) Food and Fiber Systems and 4) Urban Agriculture.
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Students Participating in FFA Events MUST Be Active FFA Members
All students submitting award applications and participating in FFA events must be listed as active FFA members on chapter rosters. You will be asked to provide membership ID numbers where registering students. A review of membership will be done as students participate in events and submit applications. Students who are not members are considered ineligible. You can still add more members to your roster until March 1, 2015 but if the student is competing before that date, make sure they are entered into the Ag Career Network before competing to obtain their ID number.
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2015 Wisconsin FFA Alumni Convention Registration
The 2015 Wisconsin FFA Alumni Convention in Stevens Point, WI is February 6-7. Please mark the date on your calendar and register TODAY! All agricultural educators, pre-service teachers, affiliate officers and members are encouraged to attend.

More information is posted on the Wisconsin FFA Alumni convention website at: http://www.wisconsinffaalumni.org/events/

REGISTER TODAY...all attendees who register (with payment) prior to 1/10/15 will be entered to win prizes!! In addition to registering for the convention, attendees who wish to stay onsite at the Holiday Inn and Convention Center may call 715-344-0200 to reserve their room(s). Be sure to mention WI FFA Alumni Block. Reservations must be made by January 7, 2015.
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2015 UW-Madison Collegiate FFA Hockey Extravaganza - Registration Due January 16
The UW-Madison Collegiate FFA Chapter invites you to come to the UW-Madison and watch the UW men's Badger Hockey team take on the Minnesota Gophers Friday, January 30. The evening begins with pizza at 5:00 p.m.; UW Marching Band and Bucky Badger at 6:00 p.m.; Game at 8:00 p.m. Cost is $20 per person. Please contact collegiateffauwmadison@gmail.com by January 16, 2015 if you plan to attend.
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2015 FFA Farm Forum Registration Due January 20
Member and advisor registration forms for the February 20-21, 2015 FFA Farm Forum are due January 20, 2015.

The FFA Farm Forum is a two-day conference specifically designed for high school juniors interested in agricultural careers. Each FFA chapter may send a maximum of four students. Openings are limited to the first 150 student applications and the first 30 advisor applications.

Registration forms and a personal conduct agreement are available on the Wisconsin Farm Bureau website (http://wfbf.com/programsevents/ffa-farm-forum/). They are also posted on the Wisconsin FFA website. A personal conduct agreement form must be submitted for each student. If you have questions, feel free to contact Deb Raemisch at 608.828.5712 or draemisch@wfbf.com.

Please send your send your completed registration forms and payment to:

Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation
FFA Farm Forum, ATTN: Deb Raemisch
P.O. Box 5550
Madison, WI 53705-0550
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Co-ops YES! Conference - March 16-17 - Mark Your Calendars!!
The Co-ops Yes! Youth Leadership Conference will be held March 16-17, 2015 at the Holiday Inn, Eau Claire. Conference registration materials are posted on the Wisconsin FFA website http://www.wisconsinffa.org/events/. Another excellent conference planned for your FFA members. Please share the information with your students. Deadline for registering for this conference is February 13, 2015 . All information is also on the Cooperative Network website? http://www.cooperativenetwork.coop/wm/education/youthprograms/web/coopsyes.html
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2015 National FFA Scholarship Program Update
The 2015 Scholarship Application is now live!!!

Students will again access the application through their Agricultural Career Network (AgCN) accounts. FFA members will create AgCN accounts using information from invitations generated by their FFA advisors. Students who have AgCN accounts do not need another invitation. Students ?SIGN IN? at FFA.org, then click the ?National Scholarships? menu button to access the application.

Advisors log into AgCN to renew rosters and issue invitations. Advisors who do not already have an AgCN login should obtain one from state staff. FFA members must be renewed and active on the chapter roster for advisors to issue invitations. Invite codes appear next to member names on the active roster. Invitations can be generated individually or by using the ?Bulk Action? option.

Reminder: Under no circumstances should an FFA member EVER create an account as a Community Member. ?Community? is for non-member use only and sends students to the non-member application. FFA members submitting a ?non-member? application will NOT qualify for scholarships with membership criteria. (Submitting more than one application is grounds for disqualification.)

Membership status is checked before judging begins. Only students with a current, active membership status will be eligible to compete for scholarships. The deadline to ensure active membership is March 1, 2015. National FFA will not contact states during judging to confirm status.

Last year?s pilot program for America?s Farmers Grow Ag Leaders scholarships (presented by Monsanto) was a huge success. This year, 352 scholarships will be offered through this program. To qualify, applicants must obtain three electronic farmer endorsements. Details will be available after November 15th at FFA.org/scholarships (click the America?s Farmers Grow Ag Leaders logo) or at GrowAgLeaders.com.

DEADLINES: The 2015 online application must be submitted prior to 5:00 p.m. EST Feb. 1, 2015. Signature Pages must be mailed postmarked no later than Feb. 8, 2015.

AgCN and/or membership questions? Call 317-802-6060. Scholarship questions? Email Scholarships@ffa.org.
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WIsconsin FFA State Degree Application Online through Ag Career Network
The new State FFA Degree Application is available now for your students to work on. Applications are due February 2. START TODAY!
1. Log in to AgCN
2. Select Advisor
3. Select FFA application center
4. Select SAE application center
5. From the drop down menu select Wisconsin State Degree or proficiency
6. On the left is a list of the pages the instruction page comes up automatically
7. If you use AET you will have a #12 and if you do not want the application locked to the students AET records you need to unlock by clicking here. If your student does not have complete records in the AET you will want to unlock it.
8. Cover page should be completed you can upload from AgCN if the student has completed their profile in the AgCN it will fill in their information.
9. Basic Set Up- select the SAE types and the rest of the pages will load based on whether it is a placement or entrepreneurship SAE.

When completing the application if you go to print and the PDF downloads with draft across the pages there are errors in the application and it will not be accepted for consideration. The pages have to be clear of the word draft when printed, no exceptions.
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Wisconsin FFA State Star Applicants - Applications Due February 2, 2015
If you have a member applying for the State FFA Degree, they may want to consider applying for State Star recognition? Stars are recognized in the four areas: Farmer, Agricultural Placement, Agribusiness and Agriscience. In order to apply for State Star Recognition, a student must be applying for their State FFA Degree, then they must also fill out the "Star Battery" which provides additional information for this level of recognition. The Star Battery is located online through the Ag Career Network with all other NEW degree and proficiency applications. In order for a student to be considered for State Star Recognition, they must include all necessary pages and information or they will not be considered if any portion of the Battery or State Degree is missing.
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American Degree Eligibility
"How long is an FFA member still eligible to apply for their American FFA Degree or continue their FFA membership?" A student can be an FFA member until November 30 following their fourth National FFA Convention after graduation...unless there is some military service to consider and then they can be a member until age 23. So here is a quick way to figure out if a student is still eligible. Take the year that the student graduated and count the number of National FFA Convention following that graduation date.

Graduation May 2012
1st National Convention - October 2012
2nd National Convention - October 2013
3rd National Convention - October 2014
4th National Convention - October 2015 - This would be the last national convention that this member could receive recognition at. They must apply for the degree by March 5, 2015.
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Encourage Members to Apply for State FFA Honors Band or Chorus
Each year we have two fantastic groups of musicians come together at the State FFA Convention to perform and also perform at the State Fair. Encourage your students who play an instrument or sing in the choir to audition for the Wisconsin FFA Honors Band or Chorus. The past couple years, we have had fewer applications submitted for these two groups. We would love to see more students apply!! Encourage FFA members to check out the application and audition process online at http://www.wisconsinffa.org/programs/

State Convention performances are June 16-18. State Fair performances are August 13-16.
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Did You Know?
How to Spend Your Time This Holiday Season - By Mark Sanborn
Here are some things to make time for this Holiday Season:
Giving. No matter how much or how little we have, we can give something to lighten the burden of another.
Thanking. Gratitude expressed increases. Thank those who have helped and supported you.
Thinking. Good thinking is harder than it seems. Think about what is truly important in your life. Think about what you want to accomplish with your days, not just how busy you are.
Celebrating. The holidays are a season of joy for all of us, regardless of our faith or beliefs. It is so easy to focus on what's wrong with the world, why not make time this season focusing on what's right?
Improving. What can you make better in the coming year? What skills would you like to learn or improve?
Playing. Recreation done right renews and re-invigorates. When was the last time you indulged in frivolous fun?
Relating. Don't become so caught up in activity that you miss the chance to deepen relationships. Spend quality and quantity time with the important people in your life. What your loved ones want from you this season isn't a present, but your presence.
Resting. Research says that many of us are sleep deprived. It is hard to maintain passion for life when one if physically burned out. Make time to rest and recharge.
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Quote of the Week
"Maybe Christmas,? he thought, ?doesn?t come from a store. Maybe Christmas? perhaps? means a little bit more.? - Dr. Seuss
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Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!

Your Wisconsin FFA Center Staff will be out of the office from Monday, December 22 through Friday, January 2. We will be back in the office on Monday, January 5, 2015.

Cheryl Zimmerman
State FFA Executive Director
Wisconsin FFA Center, Inc.
wiffacenter@tznet.com

Annual Calendar of Events

2014-2015 Wisconsin FFA Calendar of Events