Cardington FFA members up for awards


Recently, three members of the Cardington FFA chapter were announced as state finalists leading up to the impending Ohio FFA State Convention and Expo. These students applied for awards highlighting their Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAE) projects. They are currently in the final four of students pursuing these titles.

The Proficiency Award program analyzes the quality of a member’s SAE. It looks at the quality of programming, the quantity of dollars earned/hours worked, application of agricultural industry standards, accomplishments and impacts of the project, and ingenuity of the project itself.

There are 47 different areas within the Proficiency Award program, each focusing on a specific and dynamic component of agriculture. Students submitted financial and time records as well as a written application at the beginning of the year. These were evaluated in Columbus over the course of two days, and the four state finalists in each area were determined. These students will be interviewed at the end of March and discover their final state placing on stage in May. We are proud to announce that Payton Goodman and Mason Powell were both named state finalists.

Powell is employed at Grain Equipment Company where he manufactures and repairs grain legs, grain bins, and other related systems. He is a finalist in the Agriculture Mechanics Design and Fabrication Proficiency Area.

Goodman is employed at Singing Springs Nursery in Cardington. She works with local businesses to develop and implement landscape designs, propagate seeds, work within the greenhouse, and manage plant growth and care. She is a finalist in the Nursery Operations Proficiency program.

The State Star Program is a prestigious program combining the ingenuity and quality of a Proficiency Award with the quantifiable components of the State FFA Degree, thus awarding high-quality projects of students who have earned the State FFA Degree and met those minimum standards. This combines the 47 proficiency areas into four major categories — Star Farmer (for entrepreneurship projects), Star in Agribusiness (for students running their own enterprises), Star in Ag Research (for scientific research projects), and Star in Ag Placement (for students employed by an existing business). Sage Whetnall has been named a State Star in Agribusiness finalist.

Sage started her project by purchasing rescue horses from kill auctions, rehabilitating them, and reselling them to families once they were mentally and physically healed. She traveled to Indianapolis to attend the NE Indiana School of Equine Massage Therapy and Rehabilitation. She has since started her own custom hire business providing treatments and rehab to client horses. She has also purchased a thermal imaging camera to help assess client needs. Sage worked in Texas and will soon be moving to South Dakota for an equestrian internship working with performance horses.

We are proud of these students’ accomplishments and wish them luck in the next stage of the award program.

Submitted by Erin Wollett.

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