SDSU hosts Jackrabbit Invitational

Bradley C. Mallory

Bradley C. Mallory

On Nov. 2, nearly 250 Future Farmers of America members from various high schools and middle schools in South Dakota participated in the Jackrabbit Invitational. SDSU hosts the event annually.

The FFA members showed off their skills and projects to their peers, and displayed their knowledge and understanding of agriculture.

The students participated in 11 different event categories. Five involved group projects, and the other six were individual events.

Many of the students are involved in agricultural classes. Members can decide if they want to use the agricultural education they received to compete.

For other FFA students, the Jackrabbit Invitational was a requirement for their final grades. The projects were judged for competition in the SDSU Student Union. The project categories included ag marketing, ag communications, ag issues, and extemporaneous speaking, in which students have a list of topics and are given a short amount of time to prepare a speech on one topic chosen at random.

“They judge the members basically on their leadership skills,”said Stacy Redder, who coordinated the event along with Michelle Kramer.

The invitational is more or less a preliminary for district competitions, which will take place in the coming weeks.

“The main point of the invite is that most high- school students have district competitions coming up. This gives them practice for districts,” said Redder.

Erin Kennedy, a Beresford High School junior, was pleased to have the spotlight shown on the many hours she dedicated to her project.

She participated in parliamentary procedure, or how to properly conduct a formal FFA meeting.

“We didn’t have to research a lot, but we spent 40 hours practicing,” said Kennedy.

Students had many reasons for attending. Ryan Wurth Jr., a senior from Beresfords, said he attended the SDSU invitational because of his “competitive nature.”

Other than the competition, students were able to observe the college atmosphere as well as communicate with fellow FFA members from around the area.