El Centro Raises Holtville Tribune at National FFA Convention


In the past year there have been many obstacles for schools across the country to get involved and remain active in clubs and organizations. This was not the case with Southwest High School’s El Centro FFA, which has found unique ways to engage students and help them move up.

In late October, eight El Centro FFA members will take the national stage at the National FFA Convention & Expo to showcase their hard work and efforts over the past year.

The 94th National FFA Convention will be held October 27-30 in Indianapolis, Indiana. With five American graduates, two national delegates and a finalist for the national achievement award, El Centro will definitely cause a sensation at this year’s national congress.

Seniors Daniela Bastidas and Andrew Angulo from the El Centro FFA Chapter were selected as national delegates to the national convention. In three weeks, both students will be flying to Indiana to attend national delegate meetings to ensure the FFA remains a student-run organization.

Daniela and Andrew are two of 38 students selected to represent the California FFA. The National FFA Delegate Experience ensures that the National FFA Organization remains a student-led organization serving students across the United States, from the state of Alaska to Puerto Rico and from the state of Maine to Hawaii.

Each year during the National FFA Convention & Expo, the delegate experience brings together 475 student leaders from across the country. Delegates come from each of the organization’s 52 national associations to share ideas and perspectives that will move the organization forward.

Each year, the California FFA Association elects a limited number of students across the state to represent the California FFA nationally.

This year, Francisco Rocha from the El Centro FFA Chapter took first place in the state for the Agricultural Processing Proficiency Award, where he rose to the national level and qualified as the top 4 in the country for this performance area. He will be on stage on October 28th to see if he is the national winner of the Agricultural Processing Proficiency Award.

Agricultural Proficiency Awards honor FFA members who, through supervised agricultural experience, have developed specific skills that they can use for future careers.

At the national level, students can apply for awards in nearly 50 areas ranging from agricultural communications to wildlife management. Professional awards are also recognized at the local and state levels, recognizing members who explore and establish themselves in the agricultural sector.

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Each year, the FFA National Organization honors FFA members who show their greatest commitment to the organization by developing their potential for world-class leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. The American FFA Degree is awarded to a select group of students in recognition of their academic and professional excellence.

This year, 3,863 members will be awarded their American degrees. Of these members, Madison Mills, Ivanna Valenzuela, Kandyce Johnston, Malei Tipton and Mirella Saasta, members of the El Centro FFA Chapter of El Centro, will be at the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo on Oct. 30.

To be eligible, FFA members must have earned and productively invested US $ 10,000 through a supervised agricultural experience program, owning their own business or holding a professional position as an employee. Recipients must also do 50 hours of community service and demonstrate outstanding leadership and civic engagement by completing a long list of FFA and community activities.

Less than 1 percent of FFA members achieve the American FFA degree. Every American FFA Degree recipient receives a gold American FFA Degree Key and Certificate after being recognized at the National Convention. This is the largest group of members El Centro FFA has earned an American degree since its inception in 1930.

Daniela Bastidas is the reporter for El Centro FFA.

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