The Norwood Young America FFA Lettering System

Summary of NYA FFA lettering system:

FFA members who meet the established active membership criteria relating to meeting attendance, event participation, and service hours will earn an FFA letter. A point system is clearly outlined, including information on the minimum requirements of each category relating to lettering.

Clarification of the FFA Calendar Year:

For lettering purposes, the FFA year starts two weeks prior to the end of a given school year and continues until that same time of the next year. This allows time for points to be totaled and letters to be awarded before the end of a school year. It also means that summer event participation counts for the school year that comes after a given summer.

Purpose of FFA Lettering System:

This system is developed and designed to encourage and award active participation for all FFA members. Ideally, this system will motivate members to be a part of a variety of events and strive to find success in what they do in FFA. This will further help students build skills, experiences, and knowledge for a successful future during and after high school.

Point system requirement summary:

Category 1 - 6 points required

Category 2 - 10 points required

Category 3 - 5 points required

Category 1 – Chapter Meetings

Explanation: Typically, the chapter holds meetings on a monthly basis during the school year. These are important meetings as the business of the chapter is fully covered and news is communicated. Opportunities for members to discuss items of business are also important parts of these meetings. Therefore, a priority is placed on attending meetings. There may be group-specific meetings from time-to-time for contest teams and other committees. These are separate from the chapter meetings and do not apply here.

Lettering Requirement: Each meeting attended will earn a member 1 point. A minimum of 6 points must be earned in this category during a given school year to be eligible for lettering.

Category 2A – Career Development Events (Contests), regional trap-shooting, and leadership events

Explanation: There is approximately one CDE day per month during the school year and each member is strongly encouraged to be an active part of at least one CDE team. In September, there is an FFA trap shoot that students can be a part of. There are also fall and spring regional leadership event opportunities.

Lettering Requirement: Being on a state-qualifying regional team earns each member of that team 10 points. Being on a regional team that does not qualify for state earns each member of that team 5 points. State-qualifying individuals earn 10 points, even if their team did not make state. Participation in the FFA trap shoot is worth 5 points. Participation in a regional leadership rally is worth 5 points. A minimum of 10 points is required from this category to earn an FFA letter. Refer to category 2B for point opportunities that may count here for this requirement.

Category 2B – Summer Competitions and Showing

Explanation: Opportunities to show livestock, judge livestock, and take part in tractor driving competitions are available to FFA members. Participation in these events can count in place of the point requirements of category 2A.

Point opportunities: Students can earn 5 points for taking part in each of the following areas: Showing livestock at the Carver County Fair, dairy judging at the Carver County Fair, tractor driving contest competition at the Wright County Fair, FFA judging at the MN State Fair, tractor driving at the MN State Fair, and livestock judging at the MN State Fair.

Category 3 – Volunteering for Service Projects

Explanation: Throughout the entire calendar year, many events take place in which the FFA chapter needs students to volunteer their time, efforts, and talents to help fulfill the “living to serve” component of what each FFA chapter does. These are very important ways for the chapter to be involved in the community. Events that require student volunteering include, but are not limited to the following: Carver County Fair Children’s Barnyard, Carver County Dairy Expo setup and teardown, adopt-a-highway roadside cleanup, FFA Week Events, helping with the Carver County Dairy Dinner, helping with the MVEC annual meeting, and Christmas Service Projects. The annual corn drive event is the chapter’s biggest service project, but time spent on the corn drive does not count towards the requirement of this category.

Lettering Requirements: Each hour of documented volunteer service project time counts as 1 point. A minimum of 5 points is required for this area.

Other details:

Only members in grades 9-12 are eligible for lettering in FFA. Chapter officers are expected to earn points towards a letter in the same manner as all other active members. While participation in the National FFA Convention trip, the corn drive, and other such events is strongly encouraged, there are no points tied to these events regarding lettering. Also, students will still be awarded their Discovery, Greenhand and Chapter FFA degrees, which are the only degrees a chapter can award members. These degrees awarded separately from letters. Members are also encouraged to pursue State and American Degrees, but should be reminded of the level of the stringent requirements associated with each of these degrees.