Ag Ed Students Earn Awards at National Conference

November 4, 2013

Eight students from the University of Illinois Agricultural Education Program participated in the National Alpha Tau Alpha (ATA) Conclave during the National FFA Convention. Students competed in four different events and took top honors in two of the four areas.

Program of Excellence - 2nd place

Members included: Danielle Brown and Trent Hawker

The Program of Excellence Award requires students to present a written summary and oral presentation of activities that are conducted in the Agricultural Education Program throughout the previous year.  Students are evaluated in the areas of: Community Service, Professional Development, Fundraising, and Fellowship. In addition to earning a small monetary award and a plaque, the program also received a welder, donated by Lincoln Electric.

Debate Team – 2nd place

Members included: Danielle Brown, Clayton Carley, Jacob Dickey, and Claire Geiger

The purpose of the debate is to provide members an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to clearly communicate and defend their position on a provided topic. This year’s topic was “Should the FDA begin recognition of the difference between GMO and non-GMO foods and require labels to inform the consumer?” Students are evaluated on their knowledge of the topic area, public speaking skills, and ability to effectively communicate their stance on the issue.

Parliamentary Procedure – 1st place

Members included: Clayton Carley (Chair), Trent Hawker (Secretary), Shelby Cooper, Jacob Dickey, and Claire Geiger.

The purpose of the Parliamentary Procedure competition is for students to simulate a meeting using Robert’s Rules of Order. Students are evaluated on their knowledge of proper parliamentary law, public speaking ability, and their skill in presenting discussions and motions that relate to a provided topic. As the winning team, a small monetary award was presented in addition to parliamentary procedure teaching materials from One Less Thing.

Quiz Bowl – 1st place

Members included: Shelby Cooper, Trent Hawker, Caroline Hoff, and Jeff Reale

The quiz bowl was conducted in a bracket structure format. Students were asked questions that related to the history of Agricultural Education, teaching strategies, Agricultural Education Organizations – National Young Farmer Educational Association and the National Association of Agricultural Educators, and competency in the area of plant sciences. As the winner, a small monetary award was awarded, as well as plant science laboratory materials from Ward’s AgriScience.

ATA is a National Professional Honorary Agricultural Education organization that plays a vital role in the preparation of students who have chosen a major in agricultural education or extension education. The purpose of this organization is to promote the highest standards of agricultural education and a more intimate acquaintance and closer relationship with individuals who have chosen a major in agricultural education or extension education.


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