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FFA members attend Legislators Appreciation Day

Posted: March 7, 2014 1:57 p.m.
Updated: March 10, 2014 5:00 a.m.

Applied Technology Education Campus (ATEC) agricultural education students attended the state Future Farmers of America (FFA)-sponsored Legislators Appreciation Day in Columbia on Feb.19.

The students, accompanied by ATEC director Chet Horton and agricultural education instructor/FFA advisor Katie Gilson, visited with state Rep. Laurie Slade Funderburk to thank her for support of agricultural education. They were introduced to the House of Representatives by Rep. Funderburk.

The group joined other FFA members and advisors from throughout South Carolina on the north steps of the State Capitol for a special recognition ceremony. The event included the presentation of colors by the Manning FFA Color Guard and the Pledge of Allegiance by Cameron Padgett, state FFA vice president.

State FFA officers presented the Honorary State FFA Degree to Stephanie Kolok and Mike Shealy of the S.C. Forestry Commission and Maureen Tiller, principal at Clinton High School. The purpose of the degree is to recognize individuals who have rendered outstanding service to agricultural education and the FFA program.

State Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers presented the Governor’s Proclamation to the state FFA officers on behalf of Gov. Nikki Haley.

State Sen. Daniel B. Verdin of Laurens, chairman of the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, and Rep. Nelson L. Hardwick of Horry County, chairman of the House Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs Committee, both gave remarks and presented a Concurrent Resolution of Recognition and Commendation on behalf of the General Assembly.

The 2013-14 state FFA officers conducted the ceremony at the State House. They are Anna Mink, president, from the Aiken chapter, Shelby Wayne, secretary from the McBee chapter, Savannah Vickery, vice president from the Pendleton chapter, Karley Young, vice president from the Clinton chapter, Randi Sims vice president from the Lakewood chapter and Cameron Padgett, vice president from Pelion chapter.

The week of George Washington’s birthday was designated as National FFA Week in 1947 at a national FFA board of directors meeting. FFA Week is always celebrated from Saturday to Saturday and encompasses Washington’s Birthday.

FFA positively influences the young people of America by developing character and leadership skills, and preparing them for successful careers. Through agricultural education and hands-on learning, FFA members are preparing for more than 300 career opportunities in the food, fiber and natural resources industries of agriculture.

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