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Waterford FFA provides nearly a hundred annual activities and opportunities for its members. No other organization available to our student body compares in terms of the scope, number, and variety of opportunities month by month throughout the academic and calendar year. Activities are listed below by type and by month. Please realize that more activities are available than those listed here - there are simply too many and the number of activities and changes occur too frequently to list them all. Check in to this website regularly and check the monthly newsletter for more details and more opportunities.
Table of Contents
While the types of activities available to students vary widely in the FFA, members typically are involved in several key events each year. A sample of some of the more popular activities are listed below. See Activities by Month for a more inclusive list of FFA events available. Please keep in mind that many more activities occur than are listed here and new activities are added or created regularly.
Click or scroll to see the following: Monthly Meetings ~ County & State Fairs ~ Career Development Events ~ Night Labs & Agriscience Fair ~ Speaking Contests ~ Parliamentary Procedure ~ Leadership Conferences ~ State & National FFA Convention ~ WIHA Riding Team ~ Community Service ~ Social Events ~ College Tours
Waterford FFA hosts a chapter meeting on the second Wednesday of each month at 5:30 in Rm 209. All members are encouraged to attend these meetings as they are where most of the official business of the organization is conducted. Meetings typically last about a half hour and are where all business of the chapter is discussed. See also: What is FFA and How to Join
Exhibiting a project at the Racine County Fair or Wisconsin State Fair can be one of the most educational experiences available to our members. Every year Waterford is represented by dozens of students who show livestock, pigs, horses, rabbits, poultry, goats, and non-animal exhibits including basketry and photography. For more information, please visit Fair Exhibitor Information
Career Development Events (also known as CDEs or simply judging competitions) are tests of real-world skills and knowledge on a specific topic in agriculture or science. Waterford FFA usually has a livestock judging team, a dairy judging team, and an environmental science team. However, dozens of other categories are also available, including wildlife, marketing, business, machinery, and others.
Each events usually consists of a multiple choice exam based on real-world knowledge followed by tests of skills. For example, dairy and livestock teams evaluate different live animals for their genetic traits. Environmental science teams must test water and soil quality and assess the impact of different pollutants on living organisms and ecosystems. Marketing teams must create a sales presentation for a hypothetical product. In each case, students compete by using skills that professionals use daily in their jobs.
Practices for teams begin in late January or early February. Contests are held in March at the Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton. Those who qualify for state competition compete on the UW-Madison campus in late April. Dairy judging, dairy foods, and forage analysis competitions are also held in late September at World Dairy Expo in Madison.
Waterford FFA is a state leader in student research projects. FFA members have conducted experiments ranging from biofuel production to poultry feed additives to enzyme tests to agronomy to water ecosystem protection to many more. Students can choose how involved they become with their research; some may only spend one day conducting their research while others may spend 3 or 4 years on their work. Many grants and scholarships are available to student researchers and weekly opportunities are available in the fall for students to conduct their own independent research. Visit Scientific Research & Experimentation for more details.
The FFA has a strong tradition in preparing excellent public speakers. With events ranging from prepared public speaking to extemporaneous speaking to delivering the FFA creed to job interviewing to discussion on current events, many opportunities exist for students to become exceptional in their oratory skills and speech preparation. All public speaking competitors begin at the district level with competitions in February. Those who qualify for sectionals compete again in March, and the top finishers in all sectional competitions compete in June at the State FFA Convention.
See Mr. Kohn at any time if you have an interest in becoming a highly trained public speaker!
One event offered at all speaking contests is called Parliamentary Procedure (or Parli Pro for short). Parli Pro is a competition in which teams of contestants from each school are ranked in regards to their ability to conduct a meeting using Robert's Rules of Order. Knowledge of these procedures are highly valuable for anyone interested in pursuing a career in business, politics, or an organization. Practices typically begin in November with competitions in February and March.
Leadership development is one of the top priorities of the FFA. As such, many leadership development opportunities are available to students through monthly conferences held all across the state. Visit Travel & Conferences for details on specific leadership conferences hosted annually by the FFA.
At every level of the FFA (local, state, and national), members are recognized annually for their achievements and accomplishments. At the chapter level, an awards banquet is held on the last Monday of every April. For those students whose achievements propelled them to state-level competition, recognition for their efforts occurs in June at the State FFA Convention in Madison. Nationally-ranked members receive their recognition at the National FFA Convention each October in Indianapolis, IN.
In addition to recognizing outstanding achievement, the State and National conventions exist to provide students with opportunities to interact socially, build leadership skills, and prepare for their futures. Both the state and national conventions offer career shows, skill-building workshops, and leadership conferences for students to gain personally and professionally. Furthermore, students gain a wide perspective of the impact of the National FFA Convention when they have the opportunity to interact with over 50,000 FFA members during the National FFA Convention.
One of the newest opportunities offered by the FFA is WIHA, or the Wisconsin Interscholastic Horsemanship Association. Students competing on the WIHA team have the opportunity to represent Waterford in dozens of different riding events. Visit WIHA (Equestrian Riding Team) for more details.
Waterford FFA members take part in numerous community service events each year, helping to make the Waterford community a more vibrant and caring place to live. From Adopt a Family in December to Road-side Cleanup each fall to bake sale parties and bingo with residents of Levi Barnes Retirement Home, FFA members demonstrate their commitment to their community on a regular basis.
While the FFA places education, leadership, and career development as its top priorities, that does not mean that our members can't have fun! The FFA has many regular social events, including snow-tubing, Badger hockey games, new-member orientation (with games and food), haunted houses, movie nights, and more.
Tours of universities and colleges are a regular part of the FFA program of activities. FFA members regularly tour places such as UW-Madison, UW-Platteville, and other schools and techical colleges. In the past FFA members have attended the Animal Science Department's Open House at UW-Madison and have taken the campus tour of UW-Platteville. They have had the opportunity to meet with admissions staff at the UW Veterinary School and have the opportunity to meet with representatives of all ag and life sciences colleges at World Dairy Expo. Special tours can and regularly are scheduled each year for students who request it.
See Mr. Kohn if you would like to schedule a tour of a nearby university or college.