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Chieftain Times

The Student News Site of Yutan High School

Chieftain Times

The Student News Site of Yutan High School

Chieftain Times

Yutan students take advantage of FFA, qualify for state

With opportunities to learn about agriculture, machinery, welding, animal care and more, no other class or activity is quite like the National FFA Organization (FFA). While Yutan High School does not have its own program, students who wish to take part in FFA are allowed to participate in Mead High School’s program. Five students are currently taking advantage of this opportunity, three of whom qualified for state FFA this year.

Freshman Tucker Barta poses in his FFA jacket. Barta was the only Yutan freshman to qualify for state FFA. (Courtesy Photo)

“I’m glad I have the chance to take FFA because it’s something I’m actually interested in,” freshman Tucker Barta said. “It’s given me the opportunity to prepare for a future career in agriculture.” 

There are a variety of classes available in FFA. However, Yutan students are often limited to the class that is offered at the time in their schedule reserved for FFA. Because they have to drive to and from Mead every day, they lose some school time before or after their FFA classes. 

The main challenge of it is that we have different schedules, so it is hard to make them line up,” said Tucker, who takes Intro to Agriculture during fourth hour.

Tucker’s older sister, junior Loganne Barta, who is in Nursery Landscape during third hour, started FFA her sophomore year because it didn’t work in her schedule her freshman year.

“Now that I’m in FFA, it’s kind of less of a challenge to go over there. We’ve been able to get more people in, as we have three freshmen right now who go to FFA as well,” Loganne said. “But I think trying to go at first was kind of challenging. Just trying to get it approved and having it work in our schedule for a year was kind of a challenge.”

Junior Loganne Barta poses after finding out she qualified for the state FFA competition. Barta placed eighth at state in Ag Communications. (Courtesy Photo)

Like many other activities, FFA culminates with their state competition in April. Qualifying for state can be achieved through attending a Career Development Event or a Leadership Development Event contest and placing within a set number of teams depending on the event.

“When I found out I qualified, I was just super excited to be able to go to the state contest and see what my team could do there,” Loganne said.

At state, Loganne competed in Ag Communications with a team. Different from most other events, only ten teams qualify for state in Ag Communications. 

“So [at state] we presented SIRE Ethanol and what we would do to advertise the benefits of ethanol to the community. Through that we made a slideshow that we had to present to judges,” Loganne said. “Then we also made an example website and example posters. Also in the contest, we took a quiz, which was an editing quiz on how we would edit a paper. So it was really kind of [similar to] journalism.”

Tucker competed in agriscience at state, which is an event that combines a knowledge of science, agriculture and problem solving skills. 

“I was excited to go to state for the very first time,” Tucker said. “It was cool being able to compete as a freshman because I still have three more years ahead of me.”

Senior Cooper Leather poses with his FFA State Degree. Leather is planning on pursuing a career in horse training. (Courtesy Photo)

Senior Cooper Leather, who has been in FFA since the second semester of his freshman year, is currently in the class Nursery Landscape. However, at state FFA, Leather received his FFA State Degree for his work with horses, which took a long-term commitment and a lot of hard work to earn. 

“So my project was my work with horses, which included my reining, internships and shows,” Leather said. “I started the work for my State Degree when I was a freshman, so it took a long time.”

Even with all of the hard work it entails, the Yutan students in FFA feel that it brings them a lot of opportunities and benefits them greatly.

“I’m just very thankful for the people that have let me be in this organization and everyone that’s helped me do it,” Leather said. “I would really recommend others to do it. Even if you’re not into ag or anything like that, it’s just something that is totally new and you never know, it might spark a new interest in someone.”

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About the Contributor
Bella Tederman
Bella Tederman, Senior writer
Bella Tederman is a senior in her fourth year of journalism.  She enjoys writing stories and taking pictures. Outside journalism, Bella is involved in volleyball, CrossFit, powerlifting, track, speech, FBLA, FCA and NHS.
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