In celebration of National FFA Week, dozens of enthusiastic Indiana FFA members filled the historic Statehouse for FFA Page Day. Along with experiencing a full day of legislative activity, the students were able to interact with their elected leaders while getting a behind-the-scenes look at the inner workings of state government.
“It was such a pleasure to host the Indiana FFA students during their time at the Statehouse today as part of the celebration of National FFA Week,” said Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch, Indiana’s Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development. “I really enjoyed talking with this exceptional group of students and have every confidence they are going to make a large impact in their chosen future careers, hopefully in the agriculture industry.”
FFA Page Day started with a tour of the state’s Capitol Building, which included the House and Senate chambers, the Indiana Supreme Court and the Lt. Governor’s office, to list a few. After the tour, Director of Public Affairs for the Indiana Soybean Alliance (ISA) and the Indiana Corn Growers Association, Steve Howell, addressed the pages and spoke about the importance of civic engagement over lunch, provided by ISA.
The pages were then able to assist Statehouse staff members with a wide range of activities and learn about the legislative process by actually seeing it firsthand.
“Sometimes the best way to learn something is to experience it up close,” said Loren Matlock, Eastern Hancock FFA member. “It was great being able to meet some of the men and women who pass our laws and talk to them about the importance of agriculture. This was an experience I’ll never forget.”
One of the highlights of the day was a joint resolution ceremony, championed by State Senator Jean Leising (R-Oldenburg) in the Senate and State Representative Don Lehe (R-Brookston) in the House, honoring Indiana FFA and its membership. Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director, Ted McKinney, addressed members of the Indiana House of Representatives and discussed the tremendous impact FFA has in the state and to the future of agriculture.
“We are fortunate to have organizations, like FFA, that are raising up the next generation of agricultural leaders – there is no greater calling,” McKinney said. “Like every industry, we have our own set of challenges ahead of us, but I have no doubt these students, our future leaders, will rise up and meet them head-on.”
In addition to FFA Page Day, many local chapters across the state and nation use National FFA Week as an opportunity to promote agriculture in their schools and communities. All week long, Indiana’s 11,856 FFA members will be raising awareness about agriculture, recruiting students to join the organization and g