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Winfield’s 2019-2020 FFA Officer Team. Back row, from left: Hayley Lafata, chaplain; Pyper Arnold, historian; Grace Williams, reporter; Sidney Moore, sentinel. Front Row (from left): Bhradain Haverstick, secretary; Ryan Altman vice president; Chloe Kaimann, president and Dillon Heitman, treasurer. 

Students from the Winfield FFA program attended the 2019 Missouri State FFA Convention on April 25-26.

Students qualified for state depending on how they performed at FFA district conventions. Three students competed in a Poultry Career Development event and four students competed in a Soils Career Development event. Winfield students also sang in the chorus, went to a career show and attended multiple sessions hosted by the convention. 

“Overall, it was a great experience,” Winfield FFA Treasurer Dillon Heitman said.

Winfield brought home several distinguished awards from the event. Ashleigh Henebry, Carson Hoeckelmann, and Remi Taylor were awarded state degrees, one of the highest honors an FFA student can earn in the program at the state level. 

The Winfield members are three of 760 recipients that received the honor during the State FFA Degree Ceremony at the 91st Missouri FFA Convention. The annual convention is scheduled for April 25-26 at the Hearnes Center in Columbia, Missouri.

Awarding of the degree is based on a member’s supervised agricultural experience program in agribusiness or production agriculture and leadership ability as demonstrated through involvement in FFA, school and community activities. The State FFA Degree award charms are sponsored by MFA Inc., Columbia.

“The State FFA Degree is the highest recognition a state can award, representing three percent of the total Missouri FFA membership per year,” said State FFA Advisor Leon Busdieker.

In addition to the state degrees, Winfield’s Madison Koester won the Wildlife Management Proficiency Award for earning first place in FFA Area 5. 

The FFA program focuses on educating high school students not only about the science that goes into farming, but also how to communicate with others in a professional manner about their lifestyle. 

“The state convention showed me all of the different opportunities available to me,” Winfield student Addilyn Williams said. “It inspired me to work hard for the betterment of myself and FFA. If I continue my path in FFA and work hard, then hopefully I can reach my goal of becoming a Missouri FFA state officer.”

Cultivate Tomorrow, Today was the theme for this year’s Missouri FFA Convention. More than 8,000 youth and guests were expected to attend.

The Missouri FFA has 25,375 members representing 347 chapters. The national organization has more than 669,000 members representing 8,630 chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.

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