Kansas FFA returns to campus for 90th annual convention

Every FFA member wears a blue jacket with this crest on the back. (Rachel Kamm | Collegian Media Group)

More than 1,000 members, advisers and guests of Kansas FFA made the annual pilgrimage to Kansas State for the state association’s 90th convention to celebrate achievements in bringing agricultural innovations to their communities from May 29 to June 1.

K-State has hosted the convention since at least 1979, allowing thousands of students to experience and enjoy campus and Manhattan. This has led some students choosing K-State as their college upon graduation.

“The conventions have helped to make me want to attend Kansas State University,” said Laura Woods, senior at West Elk High School in Howard, Kansas.

Eli Ohlde, 2017-2018 state FFA president and sophomore in agribusiness, and other FFA members will be attending K-State in the fall.

“It’s definitely made my college choice easier, since I’ve decided to come here next year,” said Cody Glass, recent graduate of Elk Valley High School in Longton, Kansas.

The end of the convention was marked by the election of six new state officers to serve Kansas’ 9,300 FFA members for the next year’s term. To be able to best serve their members and make plans for future conventions, all elected state officers commit to attending K-State.

A highlight of the convention was guest speaker U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.

“We are excited to have the leader of our nation’s Department of Agriculture addressing the FFA members attending the convention,” Ohlde said. “FFA members are the future leaders and advocates for agriculture, and having the secretary of agriculture at the convention makes it even more special.”

To commemorate the 90th convention, the FFA hosted a meal packaging service event to package 90,000 meals to benefit communities across Kansas.