News: Important NC FFA Events Update

Important NC FFA Events Update

Posted: Tuesday, April 07, 2020

--------- April 7, 2020 update ---------

Over the past month, we have been monitoring the situation with the coronavirus in respect to FFA events and activities.  After much thoughtful consideration and evaluating our circumstances, we made the difficult decision this afternoon with the North Carolina FFA Board of Directors to cancel our summer camping program and close the North Carolina FFA Center until further notice.  This includes all FFA and non-FFA rentals.

This is as disappointing to us as it is you.  We know the impact our summer camping program has on students and we regret that we will not be able to provide life-changing opportunities this summer.  This is the first time since World War II that we have not had a summer camping program; however, we know this is the most prudent course of action to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of our members, teachers, staff, and families.  We will continue to monitor the situation and will update you all when we know it is safe to open the North Carolina FFA Center for business once again.

Currently, the State FFA Convention is still scheduled to occur June 16-18.   We are in regular communication with the Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Raleigh Convention Center, our hotels, vendors, and partners regarding our best plan of action for the State FFA Convention in June. As more information is finalized, we will share that with you all via the listserv and ncffa.org.

If you have any questions or if we can be of service to you in any way, please feel free to contact us.

--------- April 6, 2020 update ---------

The North Carolina FFA State Officer Team recognizes the importance of staying connected with members, advisors, and stakeholders and we hope to bridge the gap during this time. Please know that we are here for you. Because of the inability to connect in person, there will be a large push virtually to reach out to members in the meantime. Please share this information with everyone so they can stay tuned in and participate as well!

Region Calls to Members
In order to  deliver meaningful content to members, the State FFA Officers will be conducting video conferences via  Zoom. The first two sessions will be conducted on Tuesday, April 14th for all of the Western regions and Thursday, April 16th for all of the Eastern regions. Each session will start at 4pm. For the first sessions, students will learn more about the importance of agriculture in our state, analyze differences in production systems, and better understand how to effectively advocate for agriculture. Links and additional instructions for accessing the video sessions will be shared prior to the dates of the sessions.

YouTube - Vlog Content
Each week, the State Officers will publish two vlogs. The vlog can be found at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX8LiyySCV4jiqivOipU_Kg.  We would love for you to share this with your chapter members. You are welcome to use our content in various matters, academic and non-academic. Tuesdays will feature content for members that is geared towards leadership within our organization. This content is useful and applicable to all FFA members, especially those interested in officer positions and leadership opportunities within our Association. Fridays will feature vlog content that is fun and uplifting. Each vlog features content from members all over the state so be on the lookout for members from your chapters, regions, and federations. We hope that you share our content on your social sphere and with your FFA members. Thank you in advance for sharing our virtual platform!

Social Media Push
By primarily using personal social media pages, the State FFA Officers are posting daily challenges, motivational tips, and valuable information to stay connected with members. The North Carolina FFA social media pages will be used for important publications. Advisors, help spread the word, participate, and encourage your students to participate also! Monday: tag a member; Tuesday: talking/content; Wednesday: mid-week motivation; Thursday: positive thoughts; Friday: agriculture facts.

We hope everyone stays safe, healthy, and happy!

Sara Beth, Zannah, Megan, Malachi, Milosh, & Harrison
2019-2020 North Carolina FFA State Officer Team

 

--------- March 30, 2020 update ---------

Applications for the following are due by 11:59 pm on May 1, 2020.  All applications will be submitted electronically - no paper versions are required.

The following applications will be submitted through The AET.

  • Old North State Degrees
  • American Degrees
  • Proficiency Awards
  • National Chapter Awards

The following applications should be emailed as a PDF file to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.

  • All NC FFA Scholarships
  • National Delegate Applications
  • State FFA Officer Applications
  • Student Nom Com Applications
  • Teacher Nom Com Applications
  • NC FFA State Star Application (State Degree Applications and American Degree Applications should be submitted through the AET)

Detailed information on submission of applications is listed in the March 25 update below.  Please review this information carefully.

Agriscience Fair Application materials should be submitted through the AET.  The deadline for Agriscience Fair remains June 1. 

 

--------- March 27, 2020 update ---------

The State Envirothon Committee just met and made the decision to cancel the 2020 North Carolina Envirothon.

We have not determined how we will certify a North Carolina FFA team to participate in the National FFA Environmental and Natural Resources CDE in October at this time.  As soon as we have a solution, we will communicate that through this listserv and on ncffa.org.

 

--------- March 26, 2020 update ---------

Teachers,

We know that most agriculture teachers have plants in greenhouses that need watering and/or animals that need feed and water daily.  If the state of North Carolina and/or your town/city/county issue a shelter-in-place or stay-at-home order, that could make it difficult for you to maintain your school-based enterprises with animals and plants.  

Yesterday, North Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture, Steve Troxler, issued a Notice of Essential Food and Agricultural Employee document providing agricultural employees the ability to travel to work to perform essential agricultural duties.  I have been in touch with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture today.  They have allowed us to share the attached document with agriculture teachers across the state so you can have this as additional documentation to allow you to maintain the plants and animals in your local programs.  

As always, please work with your local administration and follow all local/county/state rules and guidelines surrounding shelter-in-place and stay-at-home orders.  I would ask that you share the attached document with your local school administration as you have your conversations with them.  This email and attached document will also be shared with CTE Directors today.

If you have any questions, please contact joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.

 

--------- March 25, 2020 update ---------

Please read through this email carefully and please reach out to any member of state staff if you have any questions.

Based on schools being closed through mid-May, we are extending the North Carolina FFA application deadline to 11:59pm on May 1, 2020.  

As previously shared via email, we are implementing online/electronic submission of North Carolina FFA award applications.  Unless otherwise noted in this email, please do not mail applications to the North Carolina FFA State Office.  

For those awards/applications hosted by the AET, we have been able to turn on a "submit to state" function.  Those awards/applications include:

  • Old North State FFA Degree
  • American FFA Degree
  • Proficiency Award
  • National Chapter Award
  • Agriscience Fair

The process for advisors to submit these applications to state is simple and straightforward.  Please watch the video below.

https://www.theaet.com/video.aspx?ID=126

Some tips to keep in mind prior to submitting degree and proficiency applications:

  • Students need a complete PDF recently printed.  This ensures they have a completed application.
  • The application must have 0 "NOT MET" issues.

We realize these applications require multiple signatures; however, this has been amended for this year.  The online submission by the chapter advisor to the state will be the only thing that is required this year.  You will not be required to get multiple signatures from multiple people this year.  When the advisor submits the application to state through the AET, that means all of the information included in the application has been verified and is accurate.  We shared this process with the North Carolina FFA Board of Directors and they formally approved yesterday. 

Agriscience Fair

The application materials for Agriscience Fair will be submitted through the AET using the process outlined above; however, the due date for Agriscience Fair materials remains June 1.

We also have applications that are not hosted by the AET.  Submission instructions are listed below for each of these.

NC FFA Scholarships

https://ncffa.org/ncffa-more/chapter-guide-to-state-ffa-activities-scholarships/

  • The advisor should email the completed application and supporting materials as a PDF directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. 
  • The completed application should be emailed by the advisor to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. You will not be required to get multiple signatures from multiple people this year.  When the advisor submits the application via email, that means that all of the information included in the application has been verified and is accurate.
  • Confidential letters of recommendation should be emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu by the individual references.  Please make sure that the reference clearly indicates the student name and the name of the scholarship for which they are applying.  
  • High School/College transcripts can be mailed to our office or emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.  We understand that some people may not want to email these documents and that is completely understandable. So please mail those directly to the NC FFA State Office at the address listed below in my signature block.  They must be postmarked on or before May 1.

National Delegate Applications

https://ncffa.org/ncffa-more/applications-forms/

  • Please email the completed application and supporting materials as a PDF directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. 
  • The completed application should be emailed by the advisor to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. You will not be required to get multiple signatures from multiple people this year.  When the advisor submits the application via email, that means that all of the information included in the application has been verified and is accurate.
  • High School/College transcripts can be mailed to our office or emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.  We understand that some people may not want to email these documents and that is completely understandable. So please mail those directly to the NC FFA State Office at the address listed below in my signature block.  They must be postmarked on or before May 1.

State Officer Applications

https://ncffa.org/z/ncffa-more/ncffa-officers/state-officer-candidates

  • Please email the completed application and supporting materials as a PDF directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. 
  • The completed application should be emailed by the advisor to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. You will not be required to get multiple signatures from multiple people this year.  When the advisor submits the application via email, that means that all of the information included in the application has been verified and is accurate.
  • Confidential letters of recommendation should be emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu by the individual references.  Please make sure that the reference clearly indicates the student name in the reference.  
  • High School/College transcripts can be mailed to our office or emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.  We understand that some people may not want to email these documents and that is completely understandable. So please mail those directly to the NC FFA State Office at the address listed below in my signature block.  They must be postmarked on or before May 1.

Nominating Committee Applications

https://ncffa.org/z/ncffa-more/ncffa-officers/state-officer-candidates 

  • Please email the completed application and supporting materials as a PDF directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. 
  • The completed application should be emailed by the advisor to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu. You will not be required to get multiple signatures from multiple people this year.  When the advisor submits the application via email, that means that all of the information included in the application has been verified and is accurate.

State Stars

https://ncffa.org/ncffa-more/applications-forms/

  • Please email the completed application as a PDF directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.
  • Please submit the Old North State Degree and the American FFA Degree applications via the online submission process for AET outlined above.

Proficiency Award Judging

Proficiency Award judging will occur virtually this year.  More information will be shared at a later date regarding proficiency award judging.

 

If you have any questions, or if we can be of assistance to you in any way, please feel free to contact any member of the state staff team.

 

--------- March 16, 2020 update ---------

Click here for a printable version of the 3/16/20 event updates

This is our best planning as of today, March 16, 2020.  As information from the CDC, NC Department of Health of Human Services, and other government agencies is shared, these plans are subject to change.  Student, teacher, and volunteer health and safety remain our top priority.

We are making these changes based on the Governor’s announcement this weekend that all public schools will be closed for two weeks.  We are also basing these deadlines on the ability to collect, score, recognize, and submit applications for further participation at the state and national levels accordingly.

Southeast Region In-Service

  • Postponed until schools are in session once again.
  • An email update will be sent out soon to all teachers in the SE Region.

Regional Officer Interviews

  • Move to May - exact date to be determined once schools are in session once again.
  • These will be conducted via Zoom in all regions.

NC FFA Award Application Deadline

  • All applications will be due by 11:59 pm on April 17, 2020. All applications will be submitted electronically - no paper versions are required.
  • The following applications will be submitted through The AET.
  • Old North State Degrees
  • American Degrees
  • Proficiency Awards
  • State Stars
  • National Chapter Awards
  • The following applications should be emailed as a PDF file to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu.
  • NC Scholarships
  • National Delegate Applications
  • State FFA Officer Applications
  • Detailed information on submission of applications will be shared later with all teachers.

State FFA Degree Requirements

  • State FFA Degree requirements are outlined in the National FFA Constitution - Article VI, Section E.  The NC FFA Constitution - Article VI, Section F, states that we will follow the requirements for the State FFA Degree as outlined in the National FFA Constitution. 
  • Amending the NC FFA Constitution requires the NC FFA Board of Directors approve the change and ⅔ of the student delegates vote to amend.
  • We cannot amend or alter the requirements for the State FFA Degree.

American FFA Degree Requirements

  • American FFA Degree requirements are outlined in the National FFA Constitution - Article VI, Section F.  The NC FFA Constitution - Article VI, Section F, states that we will follow the requirements for the American FFA Degree as outlined in the National FFA Constitution. 
  • Amending the National FFA Constitution requires the board to approve the change and ⅔ of the student delegates vote to amend.
  • We cannot amend or alter the requirements for the American FFA Degree.

Proficiency Award Judging

  • Proficiency Award Judging will now be held after applications are due. The exact date is TBD.
  • Judging will be conducted virtually by experienced teachers and other professionals.
  • Judges will have two days to score applications independently.  Results will be tallied and a Zoom call will be scheduled to review and ask questions.
  • A new proficiency award judging form will be posted online soon to sign up for judging.

All NC FFA Regional Rallies

  • In-person rallies are cancelled for 2020.
  • Move most CDEs to May - exact date to be determined once schools are in session once again.
  • The following CDEs will be conducted virtually as a written test - the exact platform TBD.
  • Ag Mechanics
  • Introduction to Horticulture
  • Nursery Landscape
  • Floriculture
  • The following LDEs will be conducted virtually as a Zoom video call.
  • Job Interview
  • Prepared Public Speaking
  • Creed Speaking
  • The following LDEs will have the regional events on Tuesday, June 16 at the NC FFA State Convention and the state events on Wednesday, June 17.
  • Parliamentary Procedure
  • Extemporaneous Public Speaking

Forestry CDE

  • Postponed until August
  • We are planning for the event to be held on a weekday after August 7 and before September 4.
  • The 2020 state winners will be recognized at the 2021 State FFA Convention.
  • More information to come. 

Ag Sales CDE - Senior and Junior Divisions

  • Move to May - exact date to be determined once schools are in session once again.
  • This will be conducted virtually as a written test state-wide.
  • The top five teams will be invited to participate in a Zoom individual sales presentation.

Farm Business Management CDE - Senior and Junior Divisions

  • Move to May - exact date to be determined once schools are in session once again.
  • This will be conducted virtually as a written test state-wide.
  • Both the problem solving and the written test will be administered.

Marketing Plan

  • Move to May - exact date to be determined once schools are in session once again.
  • All written marketing plans will be evaluated and scored.
  • The top five teams will be invited to participate in a Zoom marketing presentation.

Agricultural Tools & Materials Identification

  • The state event will still be held during the State FFA Convention.
  • The event will be open to any chapter in the state.

State Officer Selection Process

  • Applications will be due via email to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu by 11:59 pm on April 17.
  • The three confidential recommendation letters should be emailed directly to joshua_bledsoe@ncsu.edu  by 11:59 pm on April 17.
  • Interviews will be held in Raleigh June 12-14, 2020, with arrival in Raleigh on the evening of June 11.
  • Cost per candidate will be $225.

State FFA Officer Visits

  • All State FFA Officer visit requests received to date have been cancelled. 
  • If you would like a state officer to attend an event, please resubmit that request.  

Convention and Camp Registration

  • Currently we are planning on camp starting on June 1 and state convention being held June 16-18.  Again, this is fluid.
  • We will send out information about camp and convention registration once schools are back in session. 

 

The North Carolina FFA partners with other organizations for these events and will follow their guidelines and planning for their delivery.

Dairy Evaluation CDE and Dairy Handlers Activity

  • Postponed until August 28.
  • The 2020 state winners will be recognized at the 2021 State FFA Convention.
  • More information to come. 

Horse Evaluation CDE - Senior, Junior and Middle Grades

  • Postponed for now - working to secure a date
  • The state event will be administered virtually
  • More information to come 

State and Area Envirothons

  • Area Envirothons are cancelled.  
  • The in-person State Envirothon is cancelled.  
  • The State Envirothon Committee is researching the feasibility of having an online state event for all teams to participate.  
  • More information will be available in the coming weeks.

Board Action Taken:

Moved to suspend the rules for this year from the NC FFA Policy Manual, Section XIII - Career Development Events, Individual Member Awards, and Chapter Awards Program, #2:

“FFA Members may not participate in a Career Development Event that leads to a state level event after July 1 following their high school/early college graduation. (July 10, 2010)


 
--------- March 13, 2020 update ---------
 
Advisors,
 
Over the past several days, the state staff team has been monitoring and evaluating the information and developments surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.   
 
Based on the information we have received along with direction from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control, and North Carolina State University, we have made the decision to cancel/postpone all state and regional FFA activities and events through the end of May.  
 
After continued evaluation, we are implementing the following:
  • The Southeast Region In-Service will be conducted via Zoom. Connection information will be emailed soon.
  • All State FFA Officer Visits are cancelled.
  • All Regional Officer Interviews will be conducted via Zoom.  Connection information will be emailed soon.
  • The state Dairy Evaluation CDE is postponed until August 28.
  • All Regional Rallies are cancelled.
  • The state Horse Evaluation CDE is cancelled.
  • Area Envirothons are cancelled.  The in-person State Envirothon is cancelled.  The State Envirothon Committee is researching the feasibility of having an online state event for all teams to participate.  More information will be available in the coming weeks.
  • The state Forestry CDE is cancelled.
  • Our staff will be meeting next week in conjunction with the NC FFA board of directors to discuss possible alternative activities for these events. 
Governor Roy Cooper is advising against gatherings of more than 100 people in North Carolina, as the state sees more cases of coronavirus.  The UNC System has prohibited university employees from attending and hosting events that draw more than 100 people effective immediately.  Many schools across the state have banned all travel until further notice.  Some facilities are not able to host our events.  Universities are moving to online delivery of classes.  With churches, sporting events, entertainment venues, and other activities canceling or postponing, we believe this is the most prudent course of action.
 
The state staff team has spent many hours evaluating the situation and discussing the best response that will ultimately provide for the safety of our students, teachers and volunteers.  Health and safety are our top priorities.  We appreciate your patience and understanding in these unprecedented times.
 
The very nature of this situation is fluid and could change rapidly.  We will continually evaluate this dynamic situation and will make the best decisions with the most current information available.  We encourage you to check your email often as this will be our primary means to provide updates to you all.
 
At this time, are still planning to open the camping season on June 1 and we are planning to conduct the NC FFA State Convention June 16-18 in Raleigh.  Registration information for both of these events will be emailed soon.
 
Again, thanks for your understanding and flexibility.  If you have any questions please contact me directly.
 
Stay safe and healthy,
 
Josh
 
 
Joshua Bledsoe
State Agricultural Education Leader
State FFA Advisor
North Carolina State University
Department of Agricultural & Human Sciences
4158 Broughton, Campus Box 7654
Raleigh, NC 27695-7654
 
Office: (919) 513-1205
Mobile: (984) 789-2431