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July 16, 2019

Liberty High FFA chapter excels at state convention

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Liberty High School C.L. Payne Chapter members at the state FFA convention last month at Virginia Tech.
Member’s of Liberty High School’s FFA chapter won a first-place, two second-place and two third-place titles at the 93rd annual state convention last month at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.

The C.L. Payne Chapter also earned a gold rating in the National Chapter Award Program and will advance to competition at the National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis this fall.

The FHS chapter had a record 22 members at the state convention: Payton Wright, Katelyn Graves, Catheryn Wolfe, Megan Day, Jonathan Kuhler, Kenneth Reed Mayhugh Jr., Elizabeth Ott, Caroline Ott, Riley Hines, Gerard Hogan, Madison Sifford, Salem Sifford, Austin Shutt, Kayleigh Hall, Gabriella Richards, Victoria Claveloux, John Embrey, Kayci Martin, Steven Hammer, Steven Leonard, Lily Martin, and Mackenzie Butler.

They participated in Career Development Events (CDEs), attended workshops, networked with FFA members, advisors, and stakeholders from all across the state, heard from keynote speakers and received recognition for achievements throughout the year.

Three chapter members excelled in their Supervised Agricultural Experience and will move on to national competition. Payton Wright will represent Virginia in Agricultural Processing, Kenneth Reed Mayhugh Jr. will represent Virginia in Nursery Operations, and Katelyn Graves will represent Virginia in Small Animal Production and Care.

FFA members can earn degrees as they progress through the phases of their leadership, academic and career skills development. Victoria Claveloux, Katelyn Graves, Gerard Hogan, Kenneth Reed Mayhugh Jr. and Payton Wright all received the State FFA Degree at the state convention.

For the Agriculture Career Development Events, students worked together to complete an agricultural communications plan outlining how to reach the community and tell the chapter’s story. Students also completed a grammar-editing test. The team — Payton Wright, Katelyn Graves, Victoria Claveloux and Jonathan Kuhler — placed second overall.

The Agriculture Issues team researched and presented an issue facing the agriculture industry that is specific to our area. This year’s team presented on how the increased amount of rainfall is impacting the agriculture industry. The team — Kayleigh Hall, Gabriella Richards and Cathryn Wolfe — placed third.

The Employment Skills Learning Development CDE tests a member’s knowledge of the employment process. Competitors completed a resume and job application, and participated in several interviews. Megan Day competed for the C.L. Payne Chapter and placed third.

The Farm Business Management CDE consists of a two-part, four-hour problem solving and multiple-choice exam about owning and operating a farm business. Students worked through several scenarios that a business owner would face throughout the year. Team members included Austin Shutt, Riley Hines, Madison Sifford and Jonathan Kuhler. Madison Sifford placed ninth overall in the individual event, and the team placed fourth.

Victoria Claveloux placed second in the Computer Applications CDE. She had to take a written exam and complete an exercise in Microsoft Word, Excel and Access.

The Dairy Evaluation CDE consists of a test about the dairy industry and evaluating groups of dairy cows based on age. Team members included Elizabeth Ott, Caroline Ott, and John Embrey. Elizabeth Ott advanced to the second day of the competition and placed sixth overall.

The Dairy Cattle Handlers Activity is a contest that takes place during the Dairy Cattle Evaluation CDE. The handlers lead the animals to showcase the best qualities of the animals. Salem Sifford placed first in this competition and will represent Virginia at the national convention.

The chapter received a gold rating in the area of public relations and achieved a gold rating for it chapter scrapbook, completed by Victoria Claveloux and Cathryn Wolfe. The final award was an overall rating of superior for the chapter.

Madison Sifford of the C.L. Payne FFA Chapter was chosen as one of the state vice presidents to serve throughout the coming year.

Miranda Locuratolo, Stephanie Loring and Pam Woodward serve as the Liberty chapter’s teacher advisors.
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