(ALBANY, NY) – The National FFA Organization is being recognized across the country this week. As part of the NYS Assembly’s effort to celebrate FFA Week in New York, Cristian Gilces, Secretary of FFA Chapter at John Bowne High School in Queens, addressed the Assembly Agriculture Committee on Tuesday. He joined the committee meeting via Zoom and spoke about his experiences with Bowne’s program which is the largest FFA chapter in the state with 586 members.
Later in the day, the Assembly passed a resolution proclaiming FFA Week in NYS in conjunction with the observance of National FFA Week. The resolution, recognizing FFA’s role in educating and training future leaders in science, technology, engineering, agriculture and math (STEAM) fields, was introduced by Assembly Agriculture Committee Chair, Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo.
“FFA is one of the premier youth leadership development organizations on the country,” said Assemblywoman Lupardo. “FFA members have gone on to successful careers as farmers, chemists, veterinarians, government officials, entrepreneurs, bankers, international business leaders, teachers and countless other fields. The hands-on experience this organization provides is invaluable.”
“It was an honor to be able to speak before the Assembly members about FFA today,” Gilces said. “Some of the members invited me to farm tours upstate which I would love to do in the future. If there is ever a need for an FFA member to speak before the committee I would gladly speak again.”
Including the chapter at John Bowne High School, New York is home to 136 FFA chapters. The school has its own 3.8-acre farm used by the “Aggies,” the nickname for program participants. Bowne’s agriculture program has been active since 1964 and currently offers concentrations in animal science and plant science, both of which offer hands-on learning on the campus farm. Their agricultural program has been nationally recognized as providing an outstanding urban agricultural education.