WOOSTER, Ohio – FFA teaches students more than just agriculture; it teaches them life skills, according to David Acker, a local auctioneer, FFA alumni and guest speaker at the 2004 Triway FFA Banquet.
“You have to be impressed with what these young people have done,” Acker said.
“You learn a lot of basics in FFA. Agriculture is tough right now and a lot of you may not be in farming, but the opportunities are there for you to be in an agricultural business.”
Acker added that when he talks to young people at career days, he encourages them to do something they like to do.
“Set your goals, but your goals can also change and your outlook changes,” he said.
“Do what you like to do, if you can’t get up and look forward to going to work, do something else. Enjoy life, enjoy what you are doing.”
Acker commended instructor Dale Sidle for his work with the program and the activities the students have been involved in. He also commended the parents, staff and administration for their support of the students and the program.
Awards. Josh Hershberger was selected as the recipient of the 2004 DeKalb Award.
This award is presented to the outstanding senior member in the chapter based on leadership, scholarship and their supervised agricultural experience program.
Hershberger also received the scholarship award for the senior class and a proficiency award for placement in forage production.
Star students. Sherri Gress was selected as the Star Chapter Farmer. She also received the scholarship award for the junior class.
She has been a member of the parliamentary procedure team, the dairy judging team and the ag sales team and served as a chapter officer. She also placed second in the citrus sales contest.
Mike Neal was named as the star agriscience student. He has been a member of the forestry, soils and nature interpretation teams and placed fourth in the district beginning prepared speech contest, and received the first place proficiency award in forestry placement.
He also placed first in the citrus fruit sales contest and the peanut sales contest.
Katherine LeFever was selected as the chapter’s Star Greenhand. She will be a member of the 2004 Ohio FFA Choir, and placed second in the district in the FFA creed contest.
More to recognize. Kyle Miller received the Ford scholarship, courtesy of Pallotta Ford. He also received the first place proficiency award in dairy placement and placed third in the citrus fruit sales contest and first in peanut sales contest.
Liz Sidle was recognized for placing fourth in the citrus fruit sales contest, and also received the first place proficiency award for swine production.
Katie Esselburn received the scholarship award for the sophomore class and was also recognized for placing first in the district in the advanced prepared speaking contest and eighth at the state contest.
Jon Clevenger received the scholarship award for the freshman class.
Nathan Esselburn was recognized for placing third in the district in extemporaneous speaking contest, fifth in the citrus fruit sales contest, and the first place proficiency award for placement in beef production and forage production.
Proficiencies. Other students receiving proficiency awards included Ben Scheibe, first place in dairy production, second place in placement in dairy production, and first place in specialty crop production;
Laurie Smetzer, first place in specialty animal production and second place in swine production; Luke Nussbaum first place in beef production;
Randall Boley, second place in specialty crop production; and Becky Gilkey in horse production and placement in horse production.
Gilkey will also receive her State FFA degree this year.
This year, four students will receive their American FFA degrees including Ricky Neal, Chris Esselburn, Amanda Scheibe and Joanna Weaver.
Honorary degrees. Honorary FFA degrees were presented to Erik Johnson and Richard and Nancy Neal. Johnson assisted the chapter with various technological projects including the slide show for the banquet.
The Neals have hosted the chapter members for various activities and provided the use of a vehicle for the chapter to use for floats in various parades and other events.
Special recognition was also given to Ron Grosjean and Ken Miller Supply and Tom Stocksdale and Wayne County National Bank.
The businesses were recognized for their support toward the chapter’s trip to the Eastern States Exposition to participate in the dairy judging contest, where the team placed third overall.
Grosjean and Miller Supply provided jackets for the team to wear, while Stocksdale and Wayne County National Bank provided funds to the rental of a van to the contest.
New officers. Serving as the 2004-2005 Triway FFA officers will be Sherri Gress, president; Mike Neal, vice president; Katie Dye, secretary; Jarrod Snell, student adviser; Liz Sidle, reporter; Randall Boley, treasurer; Luke Nussbaum, sentinel; Katherine LeFever, historian; Nathan Esselburn, parliamentarian; and Katie Esselburn, chaplain.
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