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SMHS Named Outstanding Program and New Saint State FFA Degree Record back button

For the second year in a row, the Santa Maria FFA has been named the Santa Barbara Section Outstanding Agriculture Program.

This honor is awarded each year at the South Coast Region FFA State Degree and Proficiency Awards Ceremony, which was held at the Clark Center in Arroyo Grande on April 8, 2018.

The Outstanding Program Award is based on the three circle model of Agriculture Education. It includes FFA Leadership, Supervised Agriculture Experiences and Classroom Instruction.

“This is a tremendous honor for the eight agriculture teachers and 942 students of the Santa Maria FFA program,’’ according to Shannon Powell of the Saint Ag Department.

In addition, a new record was set in the program when, fifty-one, students from Santa Maria FFA were awarded their State FFA Degree at the ceremony. The State FFA Degree is the highest degree a member can receive by the State FFA Association. In order to qualify, members must have earned and productively invested at least $1,000 and worked 500 hours in excess of scheduled class time on an agriculture related project, have a record of outstanding leadership abilities, and have completed 25 hours of community involvement.

Proficiency Awards were also presented to seven students with excellent work experience or ownership projects based on an application, the amount of time invested and money earned. These awards honor students who have developed specialized skills that they can apply toward their future careers, Powell added.

Senior Rosie Diaz stated: “Winning a Proficiency Award was something I never thought I could do. As I received the award for the Agriscience Research – Animal Science Proficiency, I got a splendid feeling because it meant that my dedication and time on my Cattle Flight Zone Research Project paid off. I gained a great deal of knowledge from this project.”

One student also qualified as a State Finalist in their respective proficiency area. Senior Julia Martinez, who qualified in the area of Vegetable Production, will compete at the State Competition in Anaheim California in late April.

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