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Ashley Hagenow - Reporter
Rio FFA Chapter - Section 6
Supervised Agricultural Experience:
My two Supervised Agricultural Experiences involved dairy cattle and horses. My first SAE, Dairy Production Placement, focused on showing managerial cattle from a local dairy farm as well as judging dairy cows through the dairy cattle evaluation CDE and through 4-H. My second SAE, Equine Science Entrepreneurship, was centered showing horses as well as working at an equine boarding facility assisting with training horses of all disciplines and completing chores at the stable.
What was your favorite FFA opportunity that you participated in?
One of the biggest opportunities I took advantage of as an FFA member was the chance to participate in FFA Leadership Development Events. My favorite speaking contest was extemporaneous speaking, and I competed in this event both my junior and senior years of high school. For those of you not familiar, the extemporaneous speaking contest consists of drawing any 3 topics "out of a hat" relating to agriculture, having 30 minutes to construct and craft a speech on the topic drawn, presenting a 4-6 minute speech to a panel of judges, and finally having the judging panel ask the competitor questions on their topic and the agricultural industry. This contest really helped me to expand my knowledge on how broad and diverse the agricultural industry truly is, and it was in my first year of competing in this contest that I truly felt I could see a future in agriculture. After State Convention of my junior year, I decided I wanted to pursue a career into agriculture and set the goal of running for state FFA office. This contest inspired me to continue to expand my knowledge into agriculture and FFA, and I am forever grateful for the opportunities and experiences that FFA affords all of its members!
What was your favorite holiday tradition growing up?
Ever since I can remember, my cousins and I have always participated in a present exchange for Christmas. During Thanksgiving at my grandmother's, we all draw names and then look forward to Christmas day when we found out who our gift giver was! I always have enjoyed this long standing tradition in our family because it has not stopped, even through numerous cousins getting married and starting family traditions of their own, or even as all of my cousins and myself have gotten older throughout the years. It goes to show how rooted we are in the traditions that we all know and love in our families, and inspires us to leave a strong legacy for our children and grandchildren in future years.
Looking to the future, what is one goal you have for the rest of your year serving as a state FFA officer?
As many of my teammates have mentioned already, this once in a lifetime year has flown by, and I can hardly believe that my time serving Wisconsin FFA is almost half over! One goal I set for myself after attending National Convention was to inspire as many members as possible with the opportunities available to them within FFA. After listening to inspiring Retiring Addresses at National Convention from national officers and seeing the success and pride of FFA members achieving their lifelong goals, I want to inspire FFA members all over the state of Wisconsin to have the power to end up on stage at the national level in whatever capacity they choose. FFA members have the choice to make the most out of their time in the blue jacket, and if that means their time is spent in a jacket with their chapter on the back, the word "Association," or a blank jacket with simply an emblem on the back, they have the power and the capability to do so.