FFA WEEK: Meet new H-M-S FFA advisor Lindsey Meyers
Indianola native and ISU alumus enjoying first year at H-M-S
February 23, 2023
Classes may be months away from dismissing, but it's already been a memorable year for new Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn FFA advisor Lindsey Meyers.
The first-year instructor took the reigns of the local chapter in August. She succeeds Michele Wagner, who left the post for a new job with Iowa State University Extension & Outreach.
Meyers has liked what she's seen so far in Hartley. She is a native of Indianola and a 2022 graduate of Iowa State University, where she obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Agriculture Education and Life Sciences. She was involved in a variety of ag-related organizations in college and served in several leadership positions during her tenure in Ames.
Here, Meyers provides insight into her first year in the classroom and shares her vision for the H-M-S FFA Chapter.
How has your first year at H-M-S been going?
I have enjoyed H-M-S so much! Sure there have been difficult times, but the good times have by far outweighed the bad. The students, staff and community have been very accepting and helpful. The culture and atmosphere of the high school and the ag program are really what enticed me here to Hartley. I am looking forward to many more years being a part of the H-M-S community.
What have you liked about the H-M-S FFA Chapter?
I have loved how welcoming everyone has been – from the students, to staff, and parents. Everyone has welcomed me with open arms. Students are also very open to trying new things. We still have our traditions, but we are adding new ones and the students are amazing.
Have there been any challenges?
There are always challenges being a first year teacher. Being able to juggle being a teacher, an FFA advisor, and having a personal life has been a big learning experience. It is super important for a teacher to maintain their mental health. Luckily, I have an amazing group of students and community members who are more than willing to help me out in times of need.
Why did you want to go into ag education?
I had always had a passion for agriculture. I started showing cattle and pigs at age 4 and was determined to go into veterinary medicine. However, through my 4-H and FFA experience I discovered what agriculture education was. Through these experiences I found my passion for teaching others about what agriculture was.
Talking to the fairgoers about how I take care of my animals was something that I found most interesting. Then when I went on to Iowa State, I got to observe ag teachers and their classrooms, and loved the culture that was created in the ag classroom. From there I knew that one day I would have my own classroom and create that culture with my students.
What were your goals for the FFA chapter when you came to H-M-S?
Coming into the H-M-S Chapter, I had a goal of building up our competition teams. I really enjoyed contests when I was in FFA and wouldn't be where I am today without participating in them. I want students to jump out of their comfort zones, and realize that public speaking really isn't all that scary with the right resources and practice.
I also wanted to build up our chapter's Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAEs). With these, students get the chance to learn the importance of record keeping and can become financially responsible. We currently have three out-of-school members who are working towards getting their American Degree, which is the highest degree the National FFA Organization can bestow upon a member. With the amazing work that former H-M-S FFA Advisor Michele Wagner did with SAE projects with these students, the help I am providing and the dedication of these three students, I am proud of the accomplishments our students are making towards these goals.
Have you implemented any new things into the ag curriculum here? If so, what?
The former ag teacher here at H-M-S, Michele Wagner, set a great foundation for me. Coming in as a first year teacher, I don't think I could have asked for a better program to come into. They have great and fun traditions, and throughout this year we have started some new traditions as well. We have implemented routine monthly chapter meetings to increase member participation and chapter bonding.
When students graduate, what is it that you would like them to take away from their experience in FFA?
I want students who graduate to know that ag is everywhere in their life. It is not simply if you just live on a farm, own livestock, or farm the fields around you, but it is so much more. There is so much science behind the term "agriculture" – so much that the career opportunities in agriculture are endless.
I also want them to know that the connections they make with others in their FFA family will last forever. The culture in this room does not stop at the classroom door but extends to the rest of the community.