By Meredith Oglesby, OCJ FFA reporter
This year during the Ohio FFA Celebration 11 students were elected to serve the Ohio FFA Association for the coming year. Although their year may look different due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these students are looking forward to connecting with FFA members, speaking with alumni and industry professionals and stepping up to the many challenges presented throughout the year.
Since elected in May, the officers have stayed connected with one another through an online version of Base Camp, a weekly training where National FFA facilitators prepare new officers for their year of service. The team spent a week at Ohio FFA Camp Muskingum with 50 FFA members where they practiced social distancing, wore face masks and were able to meet and facilitate to members. They also participated in Ohio Leadership Camp with FFA, 4-H, Farm Bureau, DECA and Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FFCLA) members. National FFA also hosted an online version of their State Officer Summit.
“In our first three months of service, we’ve had our fair share of twists and turns in the road,” said Bethany Starlin, State President. “We look forward to being in the classroom connecting with members when possible. We also see great potential in increasing our interactions with business and industry leaders. Although this year will look different, I know this team will find unique ways to serve Ohio FFA!”
Keep reading to learn more about the State Officers who are serving during the 2020-2021 and stay connected with the officers on the Ohio FFA social media platforms (@OhioFFA)!
What are your career goals?
After graduating from Ohio State with a degree in animal science, I would like to own and operate my own hog farm.
- Victoria Snyder, State Sentinel
After graduation, I plan to attend Ohio State and major in something agricultural, as of right now agricultural communication. When I retire, I would love to open my very own bakery featuring cupcakes.
- Allison Engel, State Treasurer
In the future I hope to become an agricultural educator. I want to make a difference in students’ lives just as my agriculture teachers did for me. It isn’t just teaching students about agriculture it’s giving them a good foundation for a future career in our nation’s largest career field.
- Joe Helterbrand, State Secretary
What are your favorite things to do when you have free time?
I love creating art in many forms! One of my favorite styles of art to practice is hand-lettering or calligraphy. I also enjoy creating digital art and currently run a small business creating and selling livestock-related art I have created digitally in the form of stickers, shirts and more. I find drawing and painting fun and relaxing as well.
- Kyra Davidson, State Vice President at Large
My favorite thing to do in my free time is take pictures. A couple years ago, I bought my first camera and I’ve loved capturing moments ever since. Now, I’m a portrait photographer and enjoy exploring Northwest Ohio with my clients.
- Jake Zajkowski, State Vice President at Large
What is one thing on your bucket list?
I hope to publish a children’s book about agriculture. I am very passionate about agriculture and I love to write. I feel that this would be a great way to use the gifts I have and serve others.
- Olivia Coppler, State Vice President at Large
One thing on my bucket list is to go skydiving, I love the thrill of trying something new and the anxious feeling in your gut, and wouldn’t it just be amazing to say you did it?!
- Paige Teeters, State Vice President
What is your favorite quote?
“You are the only you that ever has been or ever will be.” When we fascinate ourselves with “fitting in,” we fall to conformity. The differences we have are what make each and every one of us unique.
- Bethany Starlin, State President
My favorite quote is by Steve Clark: “There is no growth in the comfort zone and no comfort in the growth zone.” I would not be the person I am today if I had never left my comfort zone. Another way to think about this is the person who fell and got back up is stronger than the person who never fell. I challenge myself to step outside my comfort zone every day, and I will challenge others as well.
- Bailey Lowe, State Reporter
What is your favorite FFA memory?
My favorite FFA memory is FFA camp. From my freshman year at camp I truly knew what it meant to have a family and a support system away from home. As FFA members we are truly some of the best people there are.
- Kyle Hicks, State Vice President at Large
My favorite FFA memory is winning second place in the state Meat Evaluation and Technology Career Development Event (CDE) with my team. We had the opportunity to compete in the National Western Roundup contest in Colorado and it was unforgettable!
- Reily Jacobs Bell, State Vice President at Large