Students share what makes FFA great

| February 14, 2018

COSHOCTON COUNTY – If Morgan Matis could share one message about FFA with others it would be that there is more to it than meets the eye.

The Ridgewood High School junior has participated in FFA Career Development Events and gone on to compete at state.

“CDEs have helped me learn to get my words out without stuttering,” Matis said.

Waverly Reidenbach, another RHS junior and vice president of Ridgewood’s FFA chapter, said she learned job interviewing skills from career development events.

“My family has been in FFA and my dad prompted me to join,” she said. “I’m really glad I did it. There are a lot of good opportunities.”

Palmer Erb said FFA has taught him a lot about mechanics and he’s also enjoyed the travel opportunities it’s brought him. Erb is a senior at Ridgewood and president of the FFA chapter.

“We got to go to Honduras and it was really interesting seeing the way they live,” he said. “They are so happy there.”

Palmer’s classmate Jarett Slusser encourages others to sign up for FFA.

“The classes are fun and they teach a lot of stuff that will help you,” he said.

FFA also has been a fun experience for River View High School senior Rebekah Lillibridge, who serves as the chapter’s secretary.

“It’s a good experience and you get to meet new people from different chapters,” she said.

Like Ridgewood, River View’s FFA chapter also has many members compete in career development Events. Abigail Lillibridge competed in the job interview CDE and placed eighth in her division at the state level. She said the event helped her with her confidence.

Maddie Jones wishes she wouldn’t have waited until her sophomore year to join FFA.

“I knew a lot of people that were in it and thought it looked like fun and was interesting,” she said.

Jones is now a senior at River View and the chapter reporter.

She didn’t grow up on a farm, but has greatly enjoyed learning about animals and how to do things like castrate a pig and clip their needle teeth.

“You don’t have to live on a farm to be in FFA,” said Advisor Allyssa Mullett. “You just have to have an interest in learning about agriculture and participating in our activities.”

One activity River View’s FFA chapter has been working on for a few years is restoring a one room school house.

“I’ve liked watching the whole project progress,” said Lane Beatty, the chapter’s president and a senior at River View. “When I was a freshman we didn’t even have floors or windows in it.”

The students in River View’s FFA chapter are looking forward to celebrating National FFA Week Feb. 17-24. They are planning some fun events for the whole school like Farmer Friday, wear your muck boots to school day and the traditional pancake breakfast.

Ridgewood usually waits until spring to celebrate FFA week, but the FFA chapter at the Coshocton County Career Center is trying to plan events for next week.

Zach Arnold serves as the treasurer of the Coshocton County Career Center FFA Chapter.

“I’ve learned about taking care of money, responsibility and being in FFA also helps you build social skills,” he said.

Arnold is a senior in the natural resources program at the career center.

“I’ve enjoyed the forestry competition that we go to because you compete against a bunch of different schools and test your forestry knowledge,” he said.

Senior Brody Smith said all natural resources students are in the school’s FFA chapter, but they don’t have to be an officer. He, however, is serving as the chapter’s president this year.

“It (FFA) is a good program to join because you gain a lot of knowledge from it,” Smith said.

Ben Thomas, another senior at the career center, has been the FFA secretary for the past two years.

“The fruit sale is my favorite time of the year,” he said. “We raise money and then have all the fun of boxing everything up and delivering. What’s leftover we get to eat in class. If you enjoy the outdoors, this is a good thing to be part of.”



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About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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