PCHS and RBHS Receive Recognition at State’s FFA Convention – Franklin County Times
Phil Campbell and Red Bay high school students took part in the Alabama FFA State Convention June 7-10, joining other students from across the state to compete, receive prizes, hear from guest speakers and visit sites like the Auburn University Meat Lab, the Beef Unit and Poultry Technology Center and local farms.
Recent PCHS graduate Colt Thomas received the State Star Farmer award, an achievement that PCHS FFA sponsor Caleb Beason described as “the highest honor an FFA member can receive when competing with other members of the FFA”, noting that this involves “a very arduous process”.
He explained that each nomination is based on a student’s supervised farming experience — an agriculture-related project the student undertakes outside of regular class hours.
In Thomas’ case, this meant producing commercial and purebred cattle using the latest tools and technology, including expected offspring differences and feed calculators, and spending a lot of time in the show ring. exhibition to exhibit livestock.
“I was surprised how well I did,” Thomas said. “There are a lot of great young people in the state who work as hard as I do for their FFA SAE. It takes a lot of dedication, responsibility, patience, and willpower, not to mention a lot of paperwork. »
Beason said Thomas’ hard work really paid off.
“Colt is a special and unique young man whose passion for agriculture has been evident throughout his life,” Beason explained. “His accomplishments are enormous and I am proud of his many successes.”
Representative Jamie Kiel attended the opening ceremony.
“Phil Campbell and Red Bay represented our county well at the state FFA convention,” Kiel explained. “Caleb Beason and Jarod Massey do a great job of making sure their students have the opportunity to learn a skill and compete at the state level.
“I also appreciate Franklin County School Board member Kacey Johnston for accompanying the group and supporting the students. It was a great opportunity for all students to be exposed to great leaders from across the state and country. »
Red Bay High School FFA sponsor Massey said 21 RBHS students were in attendance, with teams taking part in the Quiz Bowl, conducting a chapter meeting and judging the horses. The Quiz Bowl team placed fifth, the Horse Evaluation team placed sixth, and the Conduct of a Chapter Meeting placed fourth and received a banner.
He noted that one of his students, Maddie Pearson, was the state’s top scorer for horse evaluation.
“I had an amazing time at the Alabama FFA State Convention,” Pearson said. “It was a great experience and tons of fun. My teammates and I worked hard to prepare for the competition. We spent weeks studying and learning how to evaluate horses.
Pearson said she was shocked when she found out she had the highest score in the state. “I was not expecting that at all.”
She said a lot has gone into preparation and competition. “We took a 50 question test and judged four different classes of horses including two performance classes, Western Pleasure and Hunter Under Saddle, then we had to judge two halter classes, stock type mares and conformation geldings Hunter,” she explained. “The judges gave us two classes to orally explain why we placed the horses the way we did. There were four horses in each class and we had to place them from first to fourth.