Georgia FFA holds its first virtual convention
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 92nd Georgia FFA Convention, scheduled for April 23-25 in Macon, was rescheduled to a virtual event held via social media on May 28 and 29. The virtual convention featured four pre-recorded sessions, pre-recorded state officer retiring addresses, online voting for the 2020-21 state FFA officer team, and a final live session broadcast on Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. The 2020 convention theme was “Limitless.”
The 2019-20 state FFA officers and staff developed four sessions, lasting approximately 25 minutes each, to highlight student success from throughout the 2019-20 school year. Normally the state FFA convention is full of award presentations. This year, the winners were announced via the four pre-recorded, studio-show style sessions. The sessions were recorded May 18-20 and released online for the virtual convention on May 28 and 29.
Sessions one and two premiered at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on day one, while sessions three and four premiered the same times on day two. Sessions featured the naming of 2020 state winners in agricultural proficiency awards, middle school record books, agriscience fair, National Chapter Award program, state Star program, post-secondary scholarships, and career development events. Georgia FFA awarded the prestigious state FFA degree - the highest honor a state can bestow on an active member - to 658 students. A complete set of award results can be found on the Georgia FFA State Convention page at https://www.georgiaffa.org/page.aspx?ID=45.
Another highlight of the annual FFA convention are the retiring addresses of the outgoing state FFA officers. Each student delivers a message to the audience. In order to maintain the tradition of the Retiring Addresses, each officer recorded their message the week prior. The eight addresses were released two per day the week of the virtual convention. All retiring addresses, along with the convention sessions, are posted on the Georgia FFA website (www.georgiaffa.org) on the State Convention page, and on the Georgia FFA YouTube page.
In addition to award presentations, the voting delegates at the annual convention (two per chapter) cast votes for state business items each year. This year’s voting was handled through an online voting process during the virtual convention. Each chapter was sent two delegate login credentials. Two designated voting delegates per chapter were made aware of the state business items, including the campaign speeches for the 2020 candidates for State FFA Office. Online voting was conducted throughout the two-day virtual convention. On May 29, at the 4 p.m. live session, the members of the 2020-21 Georgia FFA state officer team were announced: President Emma Long, Pickens County; Secretary Katlyn Davis, South Effingham, North Region Vice Presidents Karter Goforth, Coahulla Creek, and Hope Tompkins, Franklin County; Central Region Vice Presidents Sarah Harper, Locust Grove, and Chely Trejo, Crawford County; and South Region Vice Presidents Ethan Hyers, Bacon County, and Colton Peacock, Long County.
The team can be seen on the State Officer page of the Georgia FFA website (www.georgiaffa.org).