Every year, Buena Park FFA take the selected leadership members go to a retreat to plan events, update calendars, make any changes to the committee structure, and participate in leadership activities . This years 2016 - 2017 leadership members are 12 students who are willing to make their chapter better. Every member was selected to be in charge of one of the four committees. The Supervised Agricultural Experience(S.A.E) & Career Development Events (C.D.E) committee leaders are Lilliann Meek (chair), Paulina Cortez (vice chair), and Nancy Chacon Mendoza (secretary). The Fundraisers & Community Service committee leaders are Devan Muro (chair), Maria Gaeta (vice chair), and Jorge Castaneda (secretary). The FFA Meetings & Banquets committee leaders are Tonatiuh Perez (chair), Edwin Madrid (vice chair), and Danyel Wickoff (secretary). The Publicity committee leaders are Jessica Mendez (chair), Brian Velazquez (vice chair), and Isabel Trout (secretary). Our advisors are Jessica Fernandes, Jacqueline Ioimo, and Scot Worrell. At the retreat the leadership team did many things to get ready for the school year and also getting to know each other.
First day of retreat we reviewed the agenda, did department updates, committee training session, a leadership activity, and a team building activity. Jacqueline Ioimo did a leadership activity on communication. The activity was suppose to show us that communication is very important when it comes to everyone trying to get the correct information to give out to our committee and members. The activity involved string that was tied to make holes to go through. Every person had to go through a hole without you touching the string and can only go through one hole once. We had two rounds to try to accomplish the task. At the end of the first round we had a discussion on what was working and what did not. When we did it the second time we succeeded and we also saw how important it is to communicate to each other. Later in the day we got time to plan out some of the events, ways to get people involved in our committee, and many other things. Scot Worrell did a team building activity on listening skills and giving directions. To be a great leader you must be able to give clear and very specific directions. Also giving directions isn’t just saying them, you also have to listen to directions been given to you. The activity involved one person listening to the instructions given to them and had to draw a picture to those directions. The other person gave the directions on the image that was already drawn and it was considered as the one million dollar idea. We had three round so that everyone had a chance to give directions and listen. In the last round we got to choose what part we wanted to play in the activity. This activity demonstrated that giving directions and listening are very important because you need to give specific, clear,and understandable directions to your committee and members. Also listening is as important too.
Day two of retreat we did leadership training activities, planning session, chapter goal and constitution. Jessica Fernandes did a leadership training about “My Whole Self”. The meaning of the training was for us to see what we as leaders have to give, believe, need, and fear. In the next leadership activity Jessica Mendez did it on delegating and taking responsibility. The activity was suppose to demonstrate that by separating the work amongst each other the job will get done faster and no one will be overworked or stressed. The activity involved for one to two people tying string and one to two to be runners. The runners can only get one string at a time and can not leave until the string is tied. They had two rounds to accomplish the task. By the end of the first round we all had a discussion on what worked for them and what they could have done better. The second time we had a winner and had another discussion on how this can help our committees. Later in the day we had another planning session with our advisors and discussed about the personality test last year and events we want to do during the school year. In the afternoon Devan Muro did a leadership activity on service above self. This activity demonstrated that in order to be a great leader we do not need to put ourselves first above the rest of our committee or members. The activity involved balloons and we had to keep the balloons in between us. We also had to walk without letting them fall and we couldn’t touch them either. We did two rounds and had a discussion on what it means to have service above self. After the activity was done we had time to get ready to take pictures and have dinner in a fancy restaurant. We had three more things to do before we go to sleep and those were chapter goals, constitution, and one more leadership activity. Scot Worrell lead a conversation on chapter goals and the constitution. For chapter goals we had to decide what we wanted to accomplish during the school year as a chapter which one of them is the national chapter application. For the constitution we had to review and make sure if there is anything that needs to be added, reworded, or removed. For our last leadership activity of the day Lilliann Meek did it on organization, time management, and task manager. In the activity she showed us a video on how much time a human has on earth and from all that time we eat sleep, drive, etc. With the time you have left over what will you do with it and we had a discussion on how much of that time we waste on watching tv and playing video games. We also had to work together on building a house of cards. By the end of the day we had time to ourselves and we all decided that we should play a game. We all had lots of fun.
Last day of retreat we did a leadership activity and our last planning session. The last leadership activity was done by Tonatiuh Perez and it was on presentation skills. The activity showed us the proper way to present a presentation. Some skills we learned were to be dressed professionally, have short slides, and being confident. In the activity he showed us a video on do’s and don’ts when it comes to presenting. We also played two truths and one lie to see who does best on their presentation skills. By the afternoon we had our last planning session and filled in the calendar for the school year. The last thing before we left the cabin was share our committee plans. By the end of the retreat we all had a great time and got to bond with each other. We got to discuss about our chapter and what we want to accomplish within the school year. We also shared our committee structure and plans. We all had a great time and got something out of it. Jorge Castaneda “I noticed that it takes a lot of hard work in order to achieve a goal,” Jorge Castaneda stated. “I feel proud of this accomplishment and I really enjoyed the retreat. I thought it was educational and acquired many new skills because of it.”
The Buena Park FFA will also be participating the in the Orange County Fair from July 15th - July 24th at the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa. Members will be exhibiting their animal projects such as sheep, goats, pigs, rabbits, turkeys and calves. Students will be selling their animals on Saturday, July 23rd starting at 9:30 AM. If you are interested in supporting our program, please feel free to come by and check out our FFA member’s projects!
By Jessica Mendez, Chairman of Publicity Committee
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