BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Miriam Hoffman, of Earlville, took first place in Illinois Farm Bureau’s Collegiate Discussion Meet, held on Friday, Nov. 4.
Hoffman, a senior at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, is a member of the LaSalle County Farm Bureau and Southern Illinois University-Carbondale Collegiate Farm Bureau chapter. She will go on to represent Illinois in the national Collegiate Discussion Meet at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s FUSION Conference March 3-6 in Jacksonville, Fla.
In addition to a $200 cash prize, Hoffman will receive an expense-paid trip to the AFBF FUSION Conference and the IAA Annual Meeting in December, and a $1,500 scholarship courtesy of GROWMARK, Inc.
The IFB Collegiate Discussion Meet judges contestants’ ability to manage small group discussions. It is an opportunity for students to exhibit open-mindedness and knowledge while retaining a flexible position. Participants exchange facts and insights on a pre-determined topic while practicing teamwork and brainstorming logical solutions for difficult problems in the agriculture industry.
The event consists of three parts: opening statements, open discussion and closing statements. Participants are scored by judges based on their problem solving and implementation, analysis of the topic, cooperative attitude and delivery.
In total, 16 students competed in the meet at IFB’s home office in Bloomington. Final four participants included:
- Second place: Emma Kuhns, University of Illinois, Effingham County
- Third place: Kylie Schakel, Lincoln Land Community College, Sangamon County
- Fourth place: Keely Wixted, Joliet Junior College, DuPage County
The Illinois Farm Bureau is a member of the American Farm Bureau Federation, a national organization of farmers and ranchers. Founded in 1916, IFB is a non-profit, membership organization directed by farmers who join through their county Farm Bureau. IFB has a total membership of more than 366,043 and a farmer membership of 76,527. IFB represents three out of four Illinois farmers.
— Illinois Farm Bureau