Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Student Success Across Pennsylvania Recognized

On January 9th at the 101st Pennsylvania Farm Show, Pennsylvania FFA held their 88th Mid-Winter Convention. During this convention there were guest speakers which included Pennsylvania Governor Tom wolf, Secretary of Agriculture Russel Reading, Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera, and a presentation from Now Holland Vice President Bret Lieberman.

The next order of business at convention was the awarding of State Stars which come from the four categories of Agribuisness, Agriscience, Ag Placement, and Ag Production. To be selected as a State Star these students had to become the Regional Star in their category, and then go throw interviews during the morning before Mid-Winter Convention. This years State Stars were Nate Guldin from Oley Valley in the area of Agribuisness, Kassandra Nulton from West Perry in the area Agriscience, Alyssa Yoder from Central Columbia in the area of Ag Placement, and William Horning from Grassland FFA in the area of Ag Production. These students have worked hard throughout their years in the FFA Organization, and were well deserving of this award. Congratulations to each one that competed.

The highest award Pennsylvania FFA can bestow upon its members is the golden Keystone Degree symbolizing their achievements, hard work, and dedication to the FFA Organization made throughout their FFA career in high school. This year there were 357 Keystone Degrees awarded. This degree opens up the doors for each of them to apply for the coveted golden key of the American Degree, which is the highest award a member can receive from the National FFA Organization for all of their hard work and dedication to the FFA organization and agriculture.

Pennsylvania FFA State President Libby Baker-Mikesell was asked about her opinions on Mid-Winter Convention and she had said, "Mid-Winter is very humbling and makes me cherish the full circle of the FFA experience. Seeing so many members put on their jackets for the first time, and also so many seniors receive their Keystone Degree who may have gotten their jackets a few years ago brings around the full circle of hard work and determination. That to me is indescribable." 

Pennsylvania FFA State Treasurer was asked the same question and she replied, "When I stepped out on that stage to a crowd of 5,000 people it hit me that this is my purpose. I am here to honor and recognize our members for all their hard work, and I am so incredibly proud of them and all the great things they are accomplishing."

Without Agriculture Educators across this great Nation we could not provide these great opportunities to students not just in Pennsylvania, but across the United States of America. Penn State Teach Ag provides not only quality educators and professional personal development, but also the mentors, the inspirations to students, and the opportunity to change lives of many students across the United States.

To learn more about starting on the path to having a career that makes a positive impact on the lives of students across the globe by becoming an agricultural educator, please contact the agricultural teacher education program at teachag@psu.edu. Follow us on Twitter at TeachAgPSU, on Facebook, or on our blog.



Luke Kerstetter

Student Blogger

Twitter Handle: @lmkerstetter96

2020 Agriculture Education Student Teacher


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