Last week, the National FFA Organization announced that they will once again be hosting the National FFA Convention & Expo in-person. In addition to the in-person event, the National FFA Organization also announced there will be a virtual option for those interested in celebrating from home. For many FFA members, this is exactly the news they were looking forward to. After so much had changed in the past year and half, bringing back the in-person aspect of for 94th national convention brought much joy for FFA members and advisors.
From October 27 to 30, FFA members will once again flood Indianapolis with the sea of blue corduroy jackets.
Excitement in the air
Many members are excited to finally get back to normal — everything from exploring the expo, attending the general sessions, watching the American FFA Degree Ceremony, and making memories with their fellow members. This past week, you could feel the excitement in the air as FFA members celebrated the news that they will be able to attend the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo in-person.
FFA members have a lot to look forward to with the convention being held in-person. For example, Audrey Pinger with the Felicity-Franklin FFA Chapter in Ohio said, “I’m excited to get to compete in person!! My team won our state contest this year, and we are super excited.”
In addition to being able to compete once again in-person, other FFA members were just excited to have the opportunity to meet new people. Elyssa Cuevas with the Newman Grove FFA Chapter in Nebraska said she was most excited for “meeting other FFA members from other states.”
FFA members were not the only ones to show their excitement for an in-person convention. On TikTok, FFA advisor Nathan Anderson — better known as mnagteacher — has nearly 90,000 followers and posted his excitement in a video.
In potentially the most relatable aspect of going back to normal, David Ramirez with the Monmouth-Roseville FFA Chapter in Illinois said, “Honestly, I’m just excited to be going SOMEWHERE that’s not a Google Meet or Zoom.”
However, not everyone is going to be able to utilize the in-person convention. FFA members and advisors have the option to attend the convention virtually . With last year’s success of their first virtual convention and to allow members to make their own choice, the National FFA Organization decided to host a virtual convention in addition to being in-person. The virtual convention will include student and teacher workshops, the virtual FFA Blue Room, National Days of Service, and the streaming of general sessions.
The virtual convention will be a great resource for students who cannot make it to the in-person convention. Whether it be over ongoing concerns related to coronavirus, lack of resources or monetary support, or due to other travel restrictions, FFA members plan to utilize the virtual platform. For example, Casey Bennett with the Ruby Mountain FFA Chapter in Nevada said, “I’m on the other side of the country, so I will potentially try to attend virtually.”
Vaccines & mask
However, there might be some differences from previous years. The good news is that the Pfizer vaccine has been approved for people 12 years of age and older. Even though the vaccine has been approved for high-school-age students, at this time, vaccines are not required to attend the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo. And according to the convention website, when it comes to wearing a mask during convention, the National FFA Organization will follow all guidelines set by the city, state, venues, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although FFA members and advisors alike are excited for the announcement, they will have to practice patience before actually being able to register for the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo. Housing for the in-person event will open July 14, with convention registration opening Sept. 8.
The announcement came after months of hard work from National FFA Officers and officers to provide the best experience possible for FFA members. National FFA Secretary Anna Mathis said, “We are so overjoyed to be hosting an in-person National Convention for members to experience the magic of our organization, together. We have worked diligently to ensure the safety of our event while not compromising the experience. After making the motion for an in person convention in the Board of Director’s meeting, I knew the real history to be made would be each member’s unique experience this October. Our convention will continue preparing the next generation of leaders who will change the world.”