Illinois Farm Bureau Names Collegiate Discussion Winners

Illinois collegiate discussion meet winners

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 the 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


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