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SLW Update
Sep. 26, 2018

Amber Patterson - Vice President
River Ridge FFA Chapter
Section 4

It’s truly great to be back home for the weekend after two busy weeks of traveling all across Wisconsin for Sectional Leadership Workshops (SLW)! During our travels, the State Officer team and I had the opportunity to visit many unique businesses to learn more about the agriculture industry around different areas of the state! These visits really opened my eyes to the wide variety of agriculture in Wisconsin that I had not been exposed to while living in just the southwest corner of the state all my life!
After the business and industry visits, we head over to the host school to begin setting up for the night of workshops ahead! State Officers put on workshops to educate students on everything from FFA Branding to Agricultural Issues and Goal Setting to Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAE)! Attending Sectional Leadership Workshop is a great way for chapter officers, advisors, and members to gain knowledge on FFA operations, meet many new people, and develop the skills needed to be great leaders in their FFA Chapter.
Tonight, Section Four SLW was held at River Ridge High School, and I couldn’t be more excited to see all the members and advisors at this event!!
Have a wonderful week!

See ya soon,

Business is Booming
Sep. 25, 2018

Collin Weltzien - Vice President
Arcadia FFA Chapter
Section 3

Hello Everyone,

What a fall it has been! SLW season is in full swing, and we are having an absolute blast! It has been an incredibly rewarding experience getting to meet so many FFA members from all over the state. But one other aspect of Sectional Leadership Workshops that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed is the Business and Industry Visits.

Before every SLW, the officer team tours 2 agricultural businesses near the host officer’s hometown. Our visits have consisted of everything from a kidney bean processing plant to a biotechnology company to local cooperatives. These tours have been incredibly eye-opening experiences and have provided me with a glimpse into the astounding magnitude and diversity of the agriculture industry. It is nearly impossible to fathom just how big agriculture really is, but these tours have helped put everything into perspective for me. They’ve helped me realize just how interconnected all agribusinesses really are.

Different sectors of agriculture are certainly facing economic challenges today. But when you stop and think about just how many different businesses and services make up the agriculture industry and the endless career opportunities available, it is difficult to deny that the future of agriculture is a bright one! With 9 billion people set to roam this earth in 2050 and the intensive process required for getting food from the farm to the plate, the agriculture industry will only continue to grow and become more dynamic in years to come. Will there be challenges? Of course there’ll be challenges. But our generation is determined to take those challenges head on.

So, take pride in representing an industry that provides the food and fiber to sustain life on this planet, an industry that is the backbone of society. Attempt to understand just how massive the agriculture industry is, the unwavering career opportunities that are out there, and the complex processes that come together to feed the world. The agriculture industry is special. It’s outlook is promising. And that is a future we can all look forward to!

As always, please never hesitate to let me know if you ever need anything!

Take Care,

Sep. 23, 2018

Paige Nelson - Secretary
Ellsworth FFA Chapter
Section 2

Hello there FFA friends!

As I reflect back on this past week, our first week on the road for Sectional Leadership Workshops, I’ve realized it has passed by much too quickly. Our days are packed full of Business and Industry Visits in the morning, workshops and sessions with members, and many meals shared over delicious meals with gracious hosts. Needless to say, our first week could be described as a whirlwind.

It has been easy to get caught up in the chaos of the little details and trying to make every small thing just right. Do you ever feel like you are caught up in a whirlwind of all the details? Maybe you get busy with school, sports, FFA, friends, hobbies, or other activities. When we get caught up in the whirlwind we miss out on the opportunity to soak up the full experience.

Whether or not we have already attended Sectional Leadership Workshop or not, and even if we don't have the chance to attend we can remind ourselves to be mindful of being present in the moment. If we are present in the moment, we will be better able to retain information. In the whirlwind, memories can be easily forgotten in a few short days. I would encourage you to simply have a note book, or a space in your planner or calendar to make a quick note of those moments you don't want to forget.

It’s easy to get caught in that whirlwind, especially when we are very involved and well rounded, however let’s find a way that works for us to become present in the moment and recall our memories so we can get the most out of our experiences and opportunities.

Until next time,

Paige Nelson

Beginning the Hike
Sep. 19, 2018

Alexis Kwak - Vice President
Prairie Farm FFA Chapter
Section 1

Hey everyone!

I hope you all made it back into the swing of balancing school, sports, family, and friends with the start of the school year. I know there’s a whole lot of activities to get done at the beginning of the year but you can power through, you got it!

One of our first big events of the year is the Sectional Leadership Workshop. As our first week of SLW’s is ending, I’m realizing how much I learned throughout the week. We kicked off in Prairie Farm this year, it felt great to be home!

There are a ton of amazing opportunities at SLW’s for everyone, even the state officer team. My favorite opportunity in my home section was being able to talk to the chapter officers about the policies coming forward at the national level. I want to be able to represent the members as they want to be heard and this was the perfect time to get their thoughts.

I went in to the workshop somewhat expecting quiet viewpoints and lots of head nods. Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised by the conversation we had. Once I explained what we were talking about, almost everyone in the room had an opinion to put in. On every issue I heard testimony from both sides of the conversation. The members in that room knew what they wanted to see from National FFA. Everything from uniform contests to inclusivity was brought up in some way shape or form. I got to witness the diversity of opinions in section one first hand, something that I didn’t think would occur. Without the members, I would have never gotten to hear it.

I want to give a huge thank you to that workshop group for being so attentive and helpful throughout the whole discussion. Due to you being involved, I now know what I am to bring to the table at National Convention throughout the delegate meetings. I can’t wait to give our section and the state of Wisconsin a voice. Never be afraid to use your voice, you never know when it will be helpful.

That’s all I have for you today, maybe I’ll see you in Granton tomorrow for our fourth SLW!

Until next time,

Sep. 15, 2018

Amelia Hayden - President
Big Foot FFA Chapter

Whether it is showing at fairs, traveling to other states, or volunteering at community events, everyone has unique things that they love to take part in during their summertime. One of my favorite parts is seeing all of the amazing experiences people are having.

Recently, some of my friends traveled down to South Carolina. Deciding to learn more about local agriculture, they headed to a plantation. As they drove up, the drive was covered in beautiful flowering trees. They were so big that the branches came together to form an arch over the driveway. They must have been ancient!

These trees endured many hurricanes in their 300 year life. In all that time out of 89 trees, only two had died. Two trees. How do we get that kind of growth? Where no matter what storms there are, we never fail to bloom the next spring. The trees’ secret was actually underneath. You see, just like the branches formed an arch above the drive, the roots beneath held every tree together. There’s two types of growth – our branches and our roots. Often, we grow by getting – getting leadership skills at conferences, getting experience in our Supervised Agricultural Experiences. That’s our branches – where others can see us bloom. But our roots – that’s growth by giving. We grow by giving when we invest time into a mentee, when we get involved in our community through FFA, service organizations, and community events. We grow when we build those connections with others; connections that hold us tight through any storm.

Growth by getting. Growth by giving. Both are important. But it is our roots in every situation that allow us to grow even further. It is our connections with the people around us and shared memories that allow us to continue to grow. How will you grow by giving, strengthen your roots, and bloom to benefit others?


Make it Simple
Sep. 11, 2018

Emily Kruse - Parliamentarian
Elkhorn FFA Chapter
Section 10

It is finally the time all state officers have been looking for: meeting you all!! This week we began chapter visits. Now for many of us, this is the first time we have ever put on a workshop; it is most definitely a nerve-racking experience.

For me, my first visit was to Hartford Union High School. Although the visit officially began at 7 am on Tuesday. The pressure hit me at about approximately 7:30 pm on Monday night. My original plan was to get to bed by 9. But as my worries and stress grew suddenly my list of to-dos grew as well.

Despite this last minute stress and hour long anxious car ride, the moment I showed up at the school my worries were minimized. As I was walking in, Emily, an FFA member, saw me and took a moment to wait for me. There was no bigger relief that day, than feeling welcomed. Whether Emily realized it or not, that seemingly small effort to wait a couple seconds for me was essential in calming my nerves.

Chapter leaders, as we work with other FFA members, approach SLWs or simply walk down the hallway, think about the actions that we can take to positively affect others. We do not need a title or position to allow us to make a difference. We have the power to impact those around us, the ability to encourage other leaders through our daily actions.

Looking forward to meeting everyone at Sectional Leadership Workshops. If any questions arise, feel free to shoot me an email at!

See you soon,


Backing Those Who Back Us
Sep. 08, 2018

Sarah Calaway - Vice President
Denmark FFA Chapter
Section 9

This past week while we were at Sectional Leadership Workshop workdays we were nominated to participate in the 10 gallon challenge by Illinois Association of FFA. We took the challenge to heart as many of our supporters of FFA are in an agricultural field in which we need to be grateful for and support them in return. As a team we decided that with 10,000 dairy farms throughout the state we would take part in such an inspiring challenge. Dairy farmers are now facing some tough times and the 10 gallon challenge was created to bring awareness and show support of the farms that are struggling. For the challenge it is encouraged to buy 10 gallons of milk and donate it to a food pantry or drink it within your own home.

With participating in the challenge, we nominated all of our home chapters along with some other State FFA Associations to also partake in the movement. I challenge you to show your support of our agricultural industry in these hard times.

Thank you for traveling with us and don’t forget to keep leaving your legacy!


You Get What You Give
Sep. 05, 2018

Jillian Tyler - Vice President
Granton FFA Chapter
Section 7

Hello Wisconsin FFA!

I hope you all are off to a great start at school. This week the State Officers are also in school! All summer we have been busy planning out workshops and chapter visits waiting to meet all of you. And this week we are coming to the finish line! The team is putting their finishing touches on our Sectional Leadership Workshops and FIRE Conferences as well as learning how to better facilitate our workshops for you! We have poured much of our time into each one of our workshops ensuring that you will walk away having learned something and ready to take on the world.

Clint Eastwood once said, “What you put into life is what you get out of it.” Keeping this in mind every day is essential in order to reach your goals in life. What you put into something is what you get out of it. You may find throughout the year that your teacher will give you a homework assignment to help you practice a new concept before a test. If you complete this homework assignment, putting more time into that class, your chances of earning a higher grade on the test raise tremendously. If you are on a sports team and you slack off in practice and don’t pay attention when the coach is talking, do you think you will perform at your highest level during a game? Chances are you will perform below your highest level because you didn’t put 110 percent into practice the other day.

Only you can ensure that you fulfill your dreams and achieve your goals. You can ensure you do this by putting 110 percent of yourself into everything you do to make sure that you get out everything that you want. If you want to get an A on your next math test, do every homework assignment, study for an extra five minutes every night and ask your teacher for help. If you want to advance to Sectional Leadership Workshop in the Creed Speaking contest recite the creed one time before bed each night and ask one extra person if you can recite the creed to them before the contest. Go the extra mile in everything you do because if you go the extra mile in the beginning the benefits you will receive will be endless.

If you have any questions or would like to me attend an event, you can contact me at I cannot wait to meet all of you at SLW, FIRE and chapter visits!

Thanks for traveling with us to SLW and FIRE Conference Workdays at Big Foot High School

Until next time,
Jillian Tyler

Labor and Tillage of the Soil...
Sep. 03, 2018

Mitchell Schroepfer - Treasurer
Antigo FFA Chapter
Section 8

Hello Wisconsin FFA!
I hope you all a had a wonderful Labor Day Weekend. As many of our members begin a new year of school I would like to take a second to reflect on what labor means today.

When FFA was founded in 1928 about one-quarter of the American population were directly tied to agriculture. Today, it is around two percent. This means that an overwhelming majority of the general population, as well as a large number of our members, don’t have a firsthand experience with “Labor and tillage of the soil.” Does this mean that younger generations don’t know what hard work is? Although some may say yes, FFA members are proof that the younger generations can still roll up their sleeves and get the job done.

Thanks to the achievements of past agriculturalists, hard work means more than just blisters and sweat. Today, hard work includes things like planning nitrogen distribution for fertilizers or estimating yield potentials based on rainfall. It is the work done before the seed hits the soil that makes the difference today. Although more work may be done with a computer than a plow, we should still respect the traditions of our past.

For all our students who started classes this week, remember that it is labor done outside of the classroom that makes the difference. Whether it be an agriscience project you love or an English paper that won’t write itself, putting your mind to work can be as fulfilling as a day in the field. Lastly, just because the nature of agriculture is changing doesn’t mean we should be afraid of getting some dirt under our nails or a little sweat on our brows.

As usual, if you want to reach me for whatever reason, I am available at

Thanks Again,

Mitchell Schroepfer

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