Updated: Apr 7
Written by Junior Katie Brunner
March 24th-29th 2022, 20 of our wonderful San Luis Obispo Chapter students were all up in Sacramento competing and attending the 2022 California FFA State Conference. Throughout the week the Parliamentary Procedure Team competed for a state title in addition to our individual contestants, Kea Gildersleeve for Extemporaneous Speaking, Michaela Warnke for Job Interview Speaking, Hayley Lorenz and Emily Pan for Prepared Speaking, and Siena Boscaro for Impromptu. Additionally our own Chapter Reporter, Emily Pan, was a finalist for State Star Reporter! Collectively, it was agreed that the week was downright exhausting, but one of the most exciting and fulfilling conferences each member had attended.
As stated before, several students from our chapter succeeded in getting to compete at a state level! During the 5th session of the conference Public Speaking and Parliamentary Procedure Results were announced. It was at this moment that our own Siena Boscaro became State champion in impromptu public speaking! Our Parliamentary Procedure placed 3rd overall in state. When asked about how Siena felt about being named the state champion she expressed, “It was super surreal when I won because my goal for the longest time was just to make it to state, and then it was to make it to semi finals, and then finals and I really had no idea I was even capable of winning. And sure it felt great to win, but it was more about the experience and learning what it’s like to compete when big things are on the line.” Our chapter is so beyond proud of their remarkable accomplishments.
The Conference Sessions, which took place in the Golden One Center, always began with a dance party and of course Opening Ceremonies run by the 2021-2022 State Officers, President (Mark Cabiliza), Vice President (Hannah Kunkle), Secretary (Paul Horta Castaneda), Treasurer (Lesly Madriz), Reporter (Jake Dowell), and Sentinel (Regan Denny). Additionally, members heard from several incredible keynote speakers including Erik Robinson, the National FFA Vice President; Dr. Adolph Brown who encouraged us all to “Do you boo”; and Erica Flores who spoke on behalf of her mother who was one of the very first women to belong to an FFA chapter. Each speaker told their own story and how agriculture and the FFA Organization formed them into the successful adults they are today. Additionally, each State Officer gave a retiring address which highlighted accomplishments in their year of service, the journey they embarked upon to become an officer, and all of the wonderful connections made throughout their time serving.
In addition to the conference sessions, there were several workshops and a career fair. The career fair highlighted California colleges as well as occupations. Several of the students who were recently accepted into Cal Poly San Luis Obispo took photos and visited future classmates at the Cal Poly photo booth. Kayla Crosno commented, “ The career fair was a really great opportunity to learn about different colleges and ask any questions you may have. The college students and alumni at the booths were very knowledgeable and helpful in educating us about their college and all the different opportunities their college offers. This was a fantastic way to see all the opportunities agriculture and college in general can give you.” Additionally, several of the workshops included icebreaker activities which introduced members to people from other chapters. This was a great opportunity to again make new connections and find common interests with members from all over California.
Overall, this year's state conference could not have been more successful! From meeting new friends and reconnecting with others, this conference allowed for the opportunity to get out and “Embrace the Adventure”.