About Sarah Van Asten
Hello Wisconsin FFA! My name is Sarah Van Asten, and I am ecstatic to serve as your 2016-2017 FFA State Vice President. I grew up on a hobby beef farm in Wrightstown, Wisconsin. We had beef, swine, rabbits, dogs, and of course, a ton of kittens. From an early age I had been excited about agriculture; however, I had no idea the plethora of opportunities that would become available to me. I joined the FFA when I was an eighth grader at Wrightstown Middle School. It was from this class on, my passion for agriculture truly began. As my high school career began, I became involved with my FFA activities. A few activities include speaking contests, Ag issues, Ag marketing, and fundraising for my local chapter. Outside of FFA I was involved with National Honor Society, Vacation Bible School, Sting Cancer, and Yearbook Club. My SAEs including Beef Production-Placement, as a raised beef cattle on my grandfather's farm, and Agricultural Education-Placement; I worked with my local Ag department implementing my lessons and labs into the classroom. I was very involved in high school but it is my family that is most important to me. My parents, Tom and Susan, have been my biggest supporters since I was born. I have a brother, Bryan, who is 32; he is married and has two beautiful boys, Devyn and Damian. My older sister, Jacqi, who is 30, is married and the mother of my godchild, Clay. I also have a younger sister, Samantha, who is 16; she definitely not old enough to be married so you can find her playing soccer with all of her friends. FFA and family are what describe me.
What has been your favorite thing about this year so far?
This year has been full of new and exciting opportunities.† Not only have I been able to travel across the state of Wisconsin but I've also been able to meet so many unique individuals.† I've have always been an extroverted person, and this year has brought me to an entire new level.† Being able to hear the stories of FFA members, alumni, parents, and supporters has transformed the outlook I have on the FFA.† I knew this organization made a difference in people's lives.† What I didn't realize was the difference it was making for the world.† I can't just pick one encounter as my "favorite;"† so instead, I'm going to group them by saying the best of the year has been meeting people who love FFA just as much as I do.
What are you looking forward to most in the coming months?
The Agriscience Fair has been an event that I have competed in since 8th†grade.† Over the years this event has only grown to include more members and projects.† Seeing the genius minds of so many FFA members is uncanny.† This event takes place at the State Convention in Madison in June.† I can't wait to see all the exceptional projects members bring this year.
What do you plan to do after state office?
After I retired from being a WI State FFA Officer, I plan to continue to live life to the fullest.† My summers will be filled with time for family and friends.† I will attend the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign pursuing a degree in Agricultural Science Education.† Following my four years of education, I plan to move back to the Fox Valley Area to teach Agricultural Sciences in a local high school!
What advice would you like to leave for FFA members?
"Someone planted a tree today, so someone can sit in the shade tomorrow."† Not everything we do will be noticed.† Not everything we do will be rewarded.† But everything we do will make a difference.† I know the frustrations of putting in the time and efforts without seeing a result; however, just because you don't see it now, doesn't mean you won't later.† Being a state officer has been amazing, though I have to admit that sometimes I didn't always feel like I was making a difference.† In late December I received an entire packet of "thank you" notes from a school I had visit a month previously.† At the time of this visit, I was having fun and spreading the positive word about agriculture.† It was not until I received those notes that I realized that I had made a difference in someone's life.† Continue to do your best because you never know the impact you are making.†