Mendota FFA earns state convention honors

2 students, chapter recognized for their achievements

Members of the Mendota FFA chapter were recognized during the 93rd annual Illinois FFA State Convention, hosted in-person and virtually throughout the state over two weeks this summer.

With a 2021 theme of “Dare to Be,” the convention annually recognizes achievements of Illinois FFA members, elects the major state officer team, and celebrates agriculture. In response to continuing coronavirus concerns, Illinois’ FFA State Association officer team and staff adjusted the convention to honor achievements in-person, at three different outdoor venues for smaller groups.

During the convention, the following awards were presented to the Mendota FFA chapter.

Foundation $3,000 Club Award Recipient: The chapter was recognized for coordinating a local campaign for the Illinois Foundation FFA which raised at least $3,000. The chapter’s fundraising total was $3,000.

Diversified Crop Production Placement State Proficiency Winner: Jack Beetz is the son of Brooke Beetz of Mendota. He is a member of the Mendota FFA Chapter and his FFA advisor is Matthew Meyer. For his Supervised Agricultural Experience, Beetz works on the family farm, Jack Beetz & Sons. They grow commercial corn, soybeans, hay and seed corn. Beetz’s responsibilities include spring tillage, planting, tile repairs, harvesting ad other projects in the shop. His SAE gave him valuable experience he will use in his future when he returns to the family farm.

State FFA Degrees: Two Mendota FFA members also received their state FFA degrees during the convention proceedings. Jack Beetz a recent graduate of Mendota High School and Elizabeth Schillinger a member of the class of 2022. Schillinger is the daughter of Jeff Schillinger and the late Cathy Schillinger of rural Earlville. The state FFA degree is the third degree that FFA members can earn during their high school career and the highest honor bestowed on a member by the Illinois Association FFA.

The business session was live streamed May 28. Individual district sessions including state and American FFA degrees, statewide awards, and the 2020-2021 Illinois State Officer Team retiring addresses were held June 1, 4, and 9 throughout the state at outdoor venues including Bloomington, Carbondale and Springfield. Stars Over Illinois awards were presented June 8, in Springfield. National FFA Eastern Region Vice President and Illinois FFA alumna Miriam Hoffman addressed attendees and new officers were elected and installed June 10 in Springfield.