The 93rd National FFA Convention & Expo may have been held virtually this year, but numbers indicate that many members across the country enjoyed the event. There were more than 217,415 viewers and participants of the event.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the decision was made in late June to host the largest student event virtually this year instead of in-person. The event kicked off Tuesday, Oct. 27, and students had the opportunity to attend events on a virtual platform.
“When it was clear that the pandemic would preclude our ability to host an in-person convention, we immediately began planning for a fully inclusive virtual event,” said CEO of the National FFA Organization Mark Poeschl. “We recognized that meeting virtually created new opportunities to connect with students from across the country, including those who would never have had a chance to attend the event in Indianapolis. So while we can’t wait for the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo to be back in our home city of Indianapolis, we know that there are aspects of this year’s virtual convention that will be repeated next year and hopefully for years to come to connect with many more FFA members than ever before.”
Convention attendees had the opportunity to view the live general sessions on RFD-TV, The Cowboy Channel and streaming on FFA.org, where they saw peers from across the country receiving recognition for their hard work, heard from this year’s national officer team, and even saw the FFA Band and Chorus perform!
“The virtual national FFA convention and expo was a great success,” said Mandy Hazlett, associate director of convention and events for National FFA. “While it might be different this year, we are thrilled to have offered experiences similar to what our members would have had during an in-person event. FFA members were able to connect with one another during live Connect Rooms via Zoom, watch a multitude of leadership development and educational workshops, immerse themselves in a 3D FFA Blue Room and listen to speakers across the industry, visit with more than 130 exhibitors in the expo, watch the general sessions with live celebration and recognition of award winners, hear tunes from the FFA band and chorus, participate on National Days of Service in their local communities and so much more. Good news for those who registered; they will still have access to all this great content and videos through the end of the year. So, if they didn’t get it all covered in three days, they have time to go back.”
FFA members also have a heart for service, and this was evident as well, as the annual National Days of Service expanded to include chapters across the country – encouraging them to give back to their local communities. At the end of the convention, more than 280 chapters from 45 states and Puerto Rico had registered local service events throughout October. The projects engaged 2,296 FFA members in 7,360 volunteer hours.
The convention concluded Thursday evening with the election of the new National FFA Officer team.
Those who missed any of the general sessions can catch highlights at FFA.org.
The National FFA Organization is a school-based national youth leadership development organization of more than 760,000 student members as part of 8,700 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.