Members of Grassland FFA traveled to Indianapolis, Indiana to compete in National Career Development Events. In the Ag Sales competition the team of Kaitlin Byram, Courtney Huber, Katie Mueller and Jalisa Zimmerman earned a silver award for their 17thplace finish. Competing with state championship teams from more than 40 states, each individual participant took a written exam, completed a prepared sales call selling a product of their choice and also completed a cold sales situation, referred to as prospecting, where the objective was to determine the wants and needs of a prospective customer. The teams then worked together to develop a marketing plan for a product they were given during the competition along with scenarios from four perspective customers.
We all unwind at Hibachi restaurant the evening before competition starts
In individual competition Katie Mueller earned a gold award for her 12th place finish in a field of nearly 200 participants. Team mates Kaitlin Byram, Jalisa Zimmerman and Courtney Huber all earned silver awards.
In the floriculture competition Reece Lauffer and Cortney Martin earned gold awards while Regina Sauder earned a silver award. The competition involved a written exam, problem solving, corsage making, a prescribed arrangement, plant identification where contestants had to know the Latin name of more than 100 specimens, a one-on-one sales practicum and lastly a team event. This year the team event involved a simulated floral shop where 7 different arrangements had to be completed within in 45 minutes.
In addition to the competitions the members of the Grassland FFA enjoyed a huge career show, took in leadership workshops and attending the opening session where they heard Dave Roever speak.
Roever shared from his experiences of having a white phosphorus grenade explode on him in Viet Nam and how he and his wife and family have dealt with all of the physical and emotional consequences as he rehabilitated and literally pieced his life back together.
His story of perseverance and commitment resonated with his audience.
“He was definitely the best speaker I have ever heard in my life” commented graduate Reece Lauffer. “One minute he had me laughing the next minute he had me crying”, added senior Cortney Martin.
Members also had a tour of Purdue University’s ag facilities, enjoyed a Japanese Hibachi style meal, had the opportunity to attend a concert and witnessed Grassland Alumnus, Adrianne Huber being awarded the American FFA Degree to culminate her FFA Career. Advisors Tracy Marchini and Bob Lauffer accompanied the FFA members on the trip.
State Champions in Floriculture 4 years in a row! Great Job Mrs. Marchini!