McConnell Uses Past FFA Experience To Help Grow Her Own FFA Chapter

On+the+left%2C+Megan+McConnell+poses+in+her+FFA+Official+Dress+when+she+served+as+president+for+her+high+school%27s+FFA+officer+team.+On+the+right+shows+McConnell+carrying+on+the+legacy+by+becoming+an+agriculture+teacher+and+FFA+advisor.+%22I+have+done+so+many+things+that+were+outside+of+my+comfort+zone%2C+especially+the+job+that+I+had+with+National+FFA+and+being+president+of+an+agricultural+sorority+in+college%2C+but+taking+on+all+those+roles+really+helped+me+to+be+brave+to+take+risks+and+setting+up+those+leadership+dynamics+in+me+when+running+my+own+chapter%2C%22+said+McConnell.

On the left, Megan McConnell poses in her FFA Official Dress when she served as president for her high school’s FFA officer team. On the right shows McConnell carrying on the legacy by becoming an agriculture teacher and FFA advisor. “I have done so many things that were outside of my comfort zone, especially the job that I had with National FFA and being president of an agricultural sorority in college, but taking on all those roles really helped me to be brave to take risks and setting up those leadership dynamics in me when running my own chapter,” said McConnell.

Emma Whitehouse, Photography Editor

Go big or go home.

Teacher Megan McConnell has always been one to take on a lot and to do her best.

Last year, McConnell took on multiple leadership roles during her first year of teaching. Before her teaching career, she was heavily involved in Future Farmers of America and agriculture within her high school and college. While she has tackled a lot her first two years of teaching, she hopes to start focusing more on the agriculture pathway and FFA chapter.

Within McConnell’s first year of teaching, she was the agriculture teacher, FFA advisor, the freshman class headmaster, and the junior class sponsor which means she was in charge of ring ceremony and prom. “My dad always says he believes in getting baptized by fire and if you take on a lot from the beginning, it is going to make you stronger. I think that taking on a lot of leadership roles in my first year, even though I probably should have taken things slower, I think that I am better for it because every day I am learning how to be stronger in the classroom, so it is constantly getting easier for me,” said McConnell.

Not only is McConnell heavily involved within the school, but she is also a board member of the Bullitt County Farm Bureau, a member of her church; Greenwood United Baptist, very close with her family and friends and is a newlywed to her husband Austin McConnell.

With all of the things McConnell is involved with, it can get hard to maintain everything. To help her stay organized, McConnell keeps a very detailed planner, makes lists, and writes down all of her tasks to help her to remember everything. 

McConnell has always been one to take on a lot. During high school, she was very heavily involved in her school’s FFA chapter. She was the vice president and later became the president of the Bullitt Central FFA chapter. Her senior year she was also on the Capital City regional officer team. “It was my first true leadership role. I think that the dynamic of how FFA was set up, encouraged me to take on more challenges,” said McConnell. 

Later on in college, she continued her passion for agriculture by becoming the president of her agricultural-based sorority and taking on a job with National FFA. “I had a really cool job with National FFA. I was chosen among eighteen FFA members all across the United States. I was a facilitator, so we went and put on 212 and 360 leadership conferences in different states,” said McConnell.

FFA has been an important aspect of McConnell’s life. It helped her step out of her comfort zone and to be able to hold a leadership role. “Even though I didn’t always plan on becoming an agriculture teacher, being involved in FFA helped me. I have never been a shy person and I have always been really friendly and I didn’t mind being in the spotlight, but FFA helped me to take that energy and put it into a more professional way. It helped me to be able to speak better in front of people and helped me to not be as closed-minded and to see all kinds of different aspects of a person,” said McConnell.

While in college, McConnell was able to be a student-teacher for two agriculture teachers. Through that experience, she was able to apply that and her past experience within FFA to become the agriculture teacher and FFA advisor at Bullitt East. 

There was a different agriculture teacher each year for the past two years before McConnell started teaching, so it was sometimes a struggle to get the program going back up again. “When Mrs. McConnell picked up the agriculture program and the FFA chapter, she was amazing. She started helping with FFA before my freshman year, so she helped plan our banquet even when she was not officially teaching at Bullitt East yet,” said junior Tori Nation, agriculture student and FFA officer.

While McConnell has accomplished a lot within her first two years of teaching, she has a lot more planned for the coming years. She plans on letting go of some of her leadership roles in the future to focus more on the agriculture program and FFA chapter. “While I do enjoy the things I am involved in, I want to focus more on our agricultural pathway and FFA chapter such as getting an active alumni started, increase active membership, start winning regional and state contest, building a stronger community and expectations of our officers and members,” said McConnell. 

Another reason why McConnell plans on letting go of some of her leadership roles is she hopes to start a family with her husband.