On Wednesday, Sept. 25, five members of the Hillsboro FFA Chapter attended the Ohio Legislative Leadership Conference. It took place in Columbus at the Statehouse where the morning workshop focused on advocating for agricultural education, informing students about important issues and preparing them to speak with legislators.
They learned about lobbying and how they can lobby in their own communities and beyond. Students also participated in an activity in which they pretended to be lobbyists attempting to convince a legislator to back up their bill. It showed them that in order to convince certain people to support you, you have to have the information and ideas that go along with the legislator’s because everyone is different.
The five members who attended where Joe Helterbrand, Alora Brown, Katie Craig, Loraleigh Mayhan and Ben Florea. After the morning workshop, these five had the opportunity to explore the statehouse and speak with state Rep. Shane Wilkin (R-Hillsboro). He even took the students onto the floor where bills are passed and took a picture with them where the speaker stands.
Then all the attendees got to eat lunch with state legislators. During lunch, Ohio Director of Agriculture Dorothy Pelanda spoke a positive message, saying that the FFA members in attendance are the future of agriculture and legislation in the State of Ohio. After lunch, the members of the Hillsboro FFA spoke with state Senator Bob Peterson (R-Washington C.H.) in his office.
President of the Hillsboro FFA Chapter Helterbrand said of his time at the conference, “I learned a lot and had fun as I got to meet our representatives and explore the Statehouse.”
Submitted by Katie Craig, Hillsboro FFA.