BIDWELL — The River Valley High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) has another achievement to be proud of, with eight students earning their State Degrees this year at the Ohio State Convention this month.
The award is not one handed out to any student that joins either. According to RV Agriculture teacher Matthew Huck, of the approximately 30,000 FFA students in Ohio, 8,000 went to state convention. Of those 8,000 students, less than 1,000 earned their State Degree. Of the 110 FFA members at River Valley, only eight earned the degree this year.
Earning the award consists of several main requirements that span over at least two years. Students must be in an agricultural class for two years, compete in multiple FFA contests, work 25 hours of community service, participate in leadership activities, and log hours and income working at a job in some agricultural capacity.
“You have to make so much money to get it, or work so many hours, anything to do with agriculture that you make money with,” said Jake Edwards.
Edwards, and other recipients of the degree explained how those jobs are required for students to log hours and activities to help develop personal discipline, responsibility, and work ethic.
“It’s a lot of hard work, a lot of organization, long nights if you mess up, but overall it’s just worth it because you have a lot of benefits afterwards,” said Skylar Jones. “I would say to other students to go for it, even if you don’t get it, try.”
Skylar Jones received her degree by traveling, showing and selling her market hogs at different fairs, shows and neighboring states. Josie Jones received her degree by working on her family farm and showing pigs at the local fair,. Jenna Burke received her degree by showing and selling her market steer at the local fair, also working on her family farm. Ashleigh McGuire received her degree by showing pigs at the local fair and working at Arby’s. Kaylee Schultz received her degree by growing and selling corn and mowing around the local community. Caleb McKnight received his degree by mowing grass around the local community and showing steers at the local fair. Jake Edwards received his degree by working on a local farm. Destiny Dotson received her degree by breeding and selling her German Shepherds.
“With record keeping, it’s a huge record keeping thing with the online system. As far as resumes, part of the reason I got hired here is that I have a state degree. Anybody that knows what it is knows what it takes to get it,” said Matthew Huck, Ag teacher. “This is the most we’ve ever had, we’ve never had eight in one year before.”
Reach Morgan McKinniss at 740-46-2342 ext 2108.