HUNTSVILLE – Members of the George West FFA chapter traveled to Huntsville on Friday, Dec. 6, and Saturday, Dec. 7, to compete in Texas FFA Leadership Development Events.
The students made their first stop in Austin on Thursday, Dec. 5, to meet with Commissioner of Agriculture Todd Staples, and other Governmental Affairs people affiliated with various oil and gas entities.
The Ag Issues competition requires a portfolio to be submitted prior to competition and it is scored on the number and the quality of forums presented. While at the meeting, the Ag Issues team presented their script titled “Should the Government Pass More Regulations in the Oil and Gas Industry to Protect the Environment” and went through an hour-long question and answer session to prepare them for their competition. George West FFA members had presented over 20 forums prior to state competitions including the one done at the Capitol on Thursday.
Will Galloway, former Beeville resident, set up a meeting with Commissioner Staples; John Hzyhorchuk and Carmen Cernosek with the Lieutenant Governor’s office; Jared Staples with Governor Perry’s office; Pete Winkler with Senator Hegar’s office; Jamie Burchfield with the House Environmental Regulation Committee; Brady Vaughn with the House Appropriations Committee; Brady Franks with the House Appropriations Committee; Tulsi Oberbeck with the Senate Finance Committee and Gabe Valenzuela with the House Licensing and Regulations Committee.
George West’s Job Interview, Senior Creed and Ag Issues teams qualified for state competition by finishing first or second in one of the state’s 57 district competitions and first or second in one of 10 area competitions. Five thousand, eight hundred and five total entries began the statewide tournament in 13 different events which reflect classroom instruction in basic leadership skills, which is part of the agriculture, food and natural resources curriculum. The year began with 527 Job Interview contestants, 791 Senior Creed speakers and 160 Ag Issues teams from all across Texas. As seen below, George West FFA members proved to be very strong competition.
George West FFA placed in the top 20 in the Senior Creed Contest. Team members included: Blake Mosley
George West FFA placed 5th in the Job Interview Contest. Team members included: Tara Liska
George West FFA placed 5th in the Ag Issues Contest. Team members included: Lauren Carroll, Sarah Crawford, Lindsay Hajek, Shelby James, Kailey Keach, Ally Ruiz, Taylor Thompson.
The Texas FFA is the nation’s largest state FFA associations with a membership of 80,000 active FFA members in Texas and 1,000 local FFA chapters. On average there are approximately 18 schools per district. FFA programs teach skills in leadership, career development and personal growth. FFA gives students the opportunity to practically apply classroom knowledge to real-world experiences through local, state and national competitions.
Sam Houston State University has partnered with Texas FFA in hosting these competitions for 77 years.