Farm Talk

December 11, 2012

Vinita FFA wins National Model of Innovation award


Parsons, Kansas — A local FFA chapter returned home from the 85th National FFA Convention & Expo with some new hardware and plenty to smile about.

The Vinita High School FFA Chapter from Vinita, Okla., was named winner of the 2012 Model of Innovation—Student Development award by the National FFA Organization. Student Development serves as one of three FFA Model of Innovation award areas geared to drive complete development of an FFA chapter. The award, contested among ten national finalists during judging earlier in the week and announced during the national FFA convention’s second general session at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, is sponsored nationally by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation.

The Vinita FFA Chapter became eligible for the award after earning a Three-Star rating during national chapter judging completed by FFA during the summer. There, judges evaluate a chapter’s Program of Activities (POA) that contains activities specified by three standing chapter committees which are to be accomplished during the course of a school year. Each of the 7,498 FFA chapters nationally are required to develop a POA specific to their needs and goals.

One key program developed by the members of the Vinita FFA Chapter was a Don’t Text-Just Drive program. The FFA members provided a half-day workshop about the safety issues of texting and driving. The attendees were shown first-hand how texting effects driving by using a go-cart on a course. About 80 percent of the students did not make it through the course without hitting an obstacle. The workshop also showed student how alcohol or drugs dangerouly impairs driving by using vision impairment glasses.

Overall, the chapter created over 15 exceptional activities during the school year related to quality standards set by the National FFA Organization. Carolyn Piguet is the FFA chapter advisor at Vinita High School. £