Ranchview High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) students have experienced several leadership development opportunities in the 2022-23 school year including the FFA District VII Leadership Development Event (LDE) contest and the FFA Made for Excellence Conference at Texas A&M University.
They placed fourth in both Agricultural Issues Forum and Agriculture Advocacy categories at the District VII LDE contest in the fall.
Students who competed in the contest were:
- Agriculture Advocacy – Kim Acosta, Serenity Anderson, Leolani Conteras, Mariam Shahram and Zoriyan Stafford-Williams
- Agriculture Issues – Barbara Clark, Madison Martin, Samaya Patel and Jasmine Subia-Maldonado
“Both the Agriculture Advocacy and Agriculture Issues Forum teams selected relevant and thought-provoking issues for their researched presentations,” said Michaela Bledsoe, Ranchview High School agriculture teacher and FFA advisor. “These students did a wonderful job creating and presenting their research on global stakeholders in agriculture and how increased globalization has changed the layout of agriculture around the globe. As well as evaluating the polarized viewpoints surrounding the use of pesticides in the food industry and the legislation and safety measures currently in place. We are so proud of these outstanding students representing Ranchview High School in our first Leadership Development Event Competition.”
Ranchview students then attended the FFA Made for Excellence Conference at Texas A&M University in January 2023. At the conference, they learned about their own leadership skills, goal setting, team building and ways to bring what they learn while in FFA with them in their future careers and endeavors.
Student officers who attended the conference were President Madison Martin, Vice President Fatima Rivera, Secretary Asia Garrett, Sentinel Jasmine Subia-Maldonado and Student Advisor Mariam Shahram.
“Attending the conference was a fantastic opportunity for the Ranchview FFA members,” Bledsoe said.
The Ranchview is currently working toward becoming a nationally recognized chartered chapter. FFA is a national organization that promotes agriculture education and the development of leadership skills in students. FFA prepares students to pursue careers in all areas of agriculture including science, technology, and business. Through the three-circle model of agricultural education, students learn through classroom and laboratory instruction, participate in supervised agricultural experience projects, and compete in career and leadership development competitions.
Upon chartering, the FFA chapter has a voice in the FFA organization and its members have all the opportunities, experiences, and scholarships available through the organization. On a local level, the FFA organization provides students an avenue to make a difference in their school and local community. Texas FFA ensures all chapters operate under the same mission, guidelines, and standards so the organization remains an accredited organization.
“The charter is an important milestone for these agriculture students,” Bledsoe said. “Ranchview FFA members are working hard this year to fulfill the necessary requirements of the chartering process because they recognize the value this organization holds and want to see the FFA find a home at Ranchview High School. Being the first cohort of agriculture students at Ranchview, they have seen it as their mission to obtain a charter and help the program grow so that the future classes of agriculturists will continue to have the amazing opportunities that FFA has afforded them. The current Ranchview FFA members hope to receive their charter this summer at the annual state FFA convention.”