By Morgan Bailey

The Diamond Mountain FFA chapter is going strong. In October, the monthly meeting was held in Mrs. Zimmerman’s classroom with the highlight being the  Greenhand Initiation. This consists of the new members of FFA, or Greenhands, being inducted into the Diamond Mountain FFA Chapter in a, you could say, creative, sort of way. The senior officers blindfolded the Greenhands, brought them into the Ag. Room one at a time, and made them brush their teeth with one of the mystery substances; molasses, horseradish, peanut butter, mustard, or ketchup.

Then the newest members of the FFA chapter put their green-painted handprints on the Ag hall, to show their dedication to our chapter. At the end of the meeting, the Jr. Officers were announced. Candidates were required to fill out a tedious application and attend an interview. Congratulations to Jr. President: Katie Damele, Jr. Vice President: Heather Lacovara, Jr. Secretary: Ali Protani, Jr Treasurer: Coltin Anderson, and Jr. Reporter: Taylor Usry.    The November monthly meeting consisted of discussion on CDE (career development events) signups, future community service ideas, and Blood-Drive signups. The Jr. Officers’ instructed the members on how to play hide-and-seek-tag, and everyone joined in and had a blast.

From Oct. 30 to Nov. 2,  the Senior Officers and their two fantastic advisors, Leslie Zimmerman and Ken Cooper, attended the 2013 National FFA Convention. The officers had the opportunity to explore the career show and gigantic FFA mall. The career show was absolutely fantastic and had a variety of activities, ranging from the Mountain Man meet-and-greet (yes, the one from Duck Dynasty), and the up-close Easton Corbin Concert, to the scholarship opportunities and college recruiting.

There were also booths presenting ways for individual FFA chapters to do fundraising and community service events, while promoting agriculture in their communities.

The senior officers’ and their advisors also attended the fancy National Chapter Award Dinner to recognize their chapter as being a star chapter. An epic concert and rodeo were put on for the FFA members. Two memorable key-note speakers were Josh Sundquist, and Rick Pitino. Rick Pitino, the famous college basketball coach, gave an incredible speech, where he motivated the crowd to realize that “success is a choice” on the road to becoming a winner. Josh Sundquist, cancer survivor, amputee, and U.S. Paralympic Skier, entertained and motivated us with his energy, charisma, humor, and sharp wit. He urged the FFA members to “never quit” even when the challenge seems impossible.

The officers truly enjoyed many amazing, once-in-a-lifetime opportunities at the national convention, and want to thank the community and school for supporting them in their endeavors.