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U of M, Crookston Collegiate FFA Wins National Parliamentary Procedure Contest
November 3, 2006

Contact: Lyle Westrom, Ph.D., associate agricultural education professor, 218-281-8110 (; Krista Lemos, director of communications, 218-281-8438 (

CROOKSTON, MN (November 2, 2006) – The Collegiate FFA Parliamentary Procedure Team at the University of Minnesota, Crookston (UMC) placed first in the National Parliamentary Procedure Invitational Contest this past week. The five-member all freshmen team includes Cole Simmons (president) from Underwood, Minn., Melanie Meyer (delegate) from Fort Ripley, Minn. and Sierra Dyrdal (secretary), Brandon Schwab (vice-president) and Alyssa Rogalla (delegate), all from Thief River Falls, Minn. The team was coached by Lyle Westrom, Ph.D., associate agricultural education professor.  In addition to the team finishing first, Dyrdal was selected the top secretary.

The Parliamentary Procedure Invitational Contest was hosted by Alpha Tau Alpha (ATA) at their annual 2006 Conclave. The annual ATA Conclave is held in conjunction with the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Ind., the last week of October. The Crookston team finished eight points ahead of the University of Kentucky to lead the field in this challenging competition. Colleges competing from this region included the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities and the University of Wisconsin, River Falls, along with other colleges from throughout the nation.

The National Parliamentary Procedure Contest rules require teams to participate together in a joint assembly. Each team competes for 50 minutes, rotating leadership responsibilities for ten minutes each and being active participants in the assembly for the other 40 minutes. Providing proper meeting leadership, total team member involvement and correctness of business transactions are all considered in the final scoring. This method of competition does not allow for “set” or prescribed meeting planning, but rather requires the leadership team to react appropriately and spontaneously to the flow of the meeting from competing team assembly members.

The University of Minnesota, Crookston is the only college in Minnesota to have a collegiate FFA chapter. This allows students enrolled in agriculture or natural resources majors to continue participating in the organization that they may have been involved with in high school. Students interested in majoring in agricultural education, agricultural business, animal science, agronomy, agricultural systems management, equine science, horticulture or a natural resources area should contact the UMC Admission’s Office at 1-800-862-6466 or visit for more information.

The University of Minnesota, Crookston (UMC) delivers more than 24 different undergraduate degree programs, including online options, in agriculture; arts, humanities and social sciences; business; math, science and technology; and natural resources. UMC is dedicated to helping students and the region aim higher, reach further, and dream big dreams. To learn more, visit

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Photo (l to r):  UMC Associate Professor and Coach Lyle Westrom, Elbow Lake, Minn.; Cole Simmons, Underwood, Minn.; Brandon Schwab, Thief River Falls, Minn.; Sierra Dyrdal, Thief River Falls, Minn.; Alyssa Rogalla, Thief River Falls, Minn.; Melanie Meyer, Fort Ripley, Minn.