FFA members attend national convention

More than 55,000 blue and gold jackets converged in Indianapolis, Ind. for the 84th National FFA Convention, Oct. 23-27. The Somonauk-Leland-Sandwich FFA Chapter sent 14 members this year - Shannon Haff, Delyn Marshall, Tori Bennett, Josh Toft, Jalyne Herren, Jenna Baker, Dylan Marshall, Brody Zmolek, Cody Wrobel, Melanie Bennett, Cordell Wisebrook, Cassie Rogers, Stephen Riskedal and Joe Warhurst.

During the five-day convention, members attended sessions and workshops, and visited the career expo. Each session contained a keynote speaker and a retiring national officer address. Workshops varied on topics from communications, leadership, plant growing and mechanics, to college preparation.

Members also had time to attend the career show to get information from more than 500 colleges, attend contests and browse the latest equipment produced by leading companies.

Also while in Indiana, the chapter stopped at the Hunter Hill Honey Orchard for a tour of the facility. This was beneficial to the chapter since members are starting their own honey production this spring.

Individually, Aaron Rogers and Darren Rogers were awarded American FFA Degrees. As a chapter, members earned the two-star National Chapter Award. Overall, National Convention was a great success for the chapter. More information can be found by visiting the chapter website at

Kicking off November, SLS sent Cody Wrobel, Josh Toft, Caleigh Blue, Brian Lichtenauer, Alex Wrobel, Curtis Rogers, Jackie Marco and Valerie Johnson to compete at the State Food Science Career Development Event. At the CDE, members had to create a product that they simulated in a marketing world. Following this, members had to individually respond to a customer complaint letter. Concluding the event, members had to identify various scents and food hazards. Overall, the chapter placed third in the state with Josh Toft placing 10th overall individually.

Finishing November, the chapter sent 11 members to compete in the Dairy Foods and the Agronomy CDE. On the dairy foods team were Cassie Rogers, Brody Zmolek, Shannon Haff, Joe Warhurst and Lindsey Pfortmiller. The agronomy team consisted of Jalyne Herren, Sara Glab, Melanie Bennett, Stephen Riskedal, Curtis Rogers, Dustin Rickert and Delyn Marshall.

During dairy foods, members tasted milk to find the issue. Another part of the contest was to see what was wrong with milking equipment. Contestants also had to identify different types of cheeses. In the Agronomy CDE, members had to look at different seeds and identify the plant to which they belonged. The last part of this contest consisted of an overall knowledge test. The dairy foods team placed fifth and agronomy placed seventh.

Keep up with the chapter and get the latest news by liking the chapter on Facebook. Visit the chapter website for more pictures and detailed stories at

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