As I reflect back on the last 28 years of teaching agriculture and advising the FFA programs at both ECHS and SEHS my mind is filled with so many wonderful memories I dare not even try to list names of the countless people who have made my job so rewarding and the thoughts of students that have enriched my life and gave me a true sense of being.
I think I will just try and give a passing view of my opinion and philosophy of education. The most important people and the very reason we have schools is for our students. Not every child fits a perfect mold, but every child is perfect in his/her own way in God’s sight. Some excel in academics, some in sports, chorus or band, and others in vocational type programs. We as citizens and educators need to use these different activities to “hook” our students into getting excited about school and their future.
We should always defend our programs that teach hands on type education. It is very vital to the survival of our country. My motto has been that FFA is more than cows and plows, even though that is important, too, but vocational training is so much more. It teaches respect, camaraderie, self confidence, teamwork, and competitiveness. FFA and other clubs help to build character in our young people and leadership skills they will take with them through out their lifetime.
I could never say thanks enough to the superintendent, board members, principals and staff members for their wonderful support of me and the program. To all the FFA alumni members, parents, community minded individuals and sponsors thanks for your love and generosity to our students and me. You have been such a blessing, you are truly friends.
Thanks to this year’s officer team — you have made my last year special. The Bethesda Pals program and Honeyridge mentor program have impacted so many young people. God bless you for years of a loving relationship.
I would like to thank my wife, boys, parents and neighbors for covering for me at home all those times I was away.
Effingham County has such a marvelous history; my prayer is that the FFA will continue to be a driving force in our community and nation. When I started teaching my goal was to remember that every student would one day be a citizen in our great country. I am so proud today to say that every one I have taught is not only a former student but a true friend. I am so blessed to have had the privilege to know you and watch you grow. Always remember “we do not know what tomorrow holds we only know who holds tomorrow” God bless each and every one of you.
SEHS FFA Advisor
During the past six years I have been in the middle school and South Effingham High School FFA.
It’s a program that makes a positive difference in the lives of students by helping them develop leadership skills and personal growth; which could lead to a successful career in the agriculture field.
What FFA means to me is not only what we do, but the people that we serve. We do all kinds of things for people and organizations. We work very closely with Bethesda Home for Boys. This was a blessing and an experience that I will never forget.
As a small child I was raised on my great-granddad and uncle’s farm. I have been around cows and hogs all of my life, I have also helped raise field crops, so my love for animals and agriculture comes naturally.
We have so many people who help in every event we take part in, and without them it would not be possible. Without our officers, members, alumni and our advisors we would not be able to accomplish our goals in FFA and in life.
I have held offices almost every year and this year served as president of SEHS FFA. I plan to continue my ag life in some way.
The FFA has made a positive impact in my life. It has truly been a pleasure to serve as an officer with such a great team of officers and advisors.
I have shown livestock for the past six years in the Effingham, Savannah, Perry and Augusta fairs.
I have been to state conventions. I was awarded the State FFA Degree at the 80th annual state convention of Georgia recently.
I received star greenhand, star chapter farmer, and other awards.
Without our wonderful advisors none of this would be possible.
SEHS FFA President
Four years ago when I toured the high school one of the rooms we went to was the agriculture classroom. I thought it was the craziest thing to see girls wearing corduroy jackets and makeup in 100 degree weather.
I asked a friend of mine why girls would want to be in a “boys redneck club?” So I was against the whole idea of joining FFA and even stepping foot into a classroom without air conditioner.
My 10th grade year I kept hearing people talk about a trip the FFA members took. They went on two charter buses to the Perry State Fair to ride amusement rides and miss school so I went to see what it was all about.
The trip was great; the people in the club were considerate, nice, happy and caring so I automatically felt welcomed. After that one trip I got into it slowly. I sold oranges and ended up getting in the top 10 for high sellers which led to another road trip. The FFA takes the top 10 sellers to Benton Lee’s for a free steak. My 11th grade year I sold fruit again and got top 10 which meant another free steak. I also went to the fair and had a blast.
Then Mr. Mock approached me about doing a discussion meet. I was not too sure about it at first seeing how I didn’t do the whole public speaking and on the spot discussions. After thinking about it for a while I decided why not give it a try if I had been closed minded in the beginning I would have never experienced all the things I had done so why not give it a try and see how I liked it; so I did. It was a great experience and I met new people, found something I enjoyed doing and slowly overcame my fear of public speaking.
At the end of my 11th grade year it was time to elect the new officers for the 2007-2008 year. Yes, I wanted to run but no, I didn’t think I would get a high ranking position. It was voting day; I was nervous, anxious and excited. That afternoon when the announcements came on and I heard my name with the title as secretary I was happy, excited and shocked all at the same time. I knew it was something that I had wanted for a long time and with the help of my teachers and classmates I set out for something and achieved it.
It’s now my senior year and I can not believe the many things I have done and the experiences I have had. From showing hogs, second place for top fruit sales two years in a row, second place in my discussion meet, and going to state to compete, winning the fishing tournament two years in a row for the largest bass, speaking to middle school students and at a young farmers banquet, and being apart of the largest club on campus. Most of all I can now say I am the girl wearing the corduroy and makeup and achieving goals I never thought I could.
SEHS FFA Secretary
I’m Paige Zittrauer and this year is my first year in FFA. I never knew how much I would enjoy it until I found out what it was all about and so far it has inspired me to give my all in everything I do. It has given me confidence and taught me how to be a leader. It has also taught me responsibility and how to make the best out of a bad situation. It has made me overcome some of my fears and taught me how to deal with life problems. I have found out there is a lot of support from teachers and parents and I feel that it has, and will teach me a lot about what I want as a career. I would have never gotten into FFA without the encouragement and help from my two ag. teachers. They have both encouraged me and others to stand out and strive to work our hardest at everything. Although it is not only the teachers, it’s everyone. Someone is always willing to help out, no matter what. I have met so many friends in FFA too, and realized that winning isn’t everything and supporting others means just as much.
FFA offers you many opportunities to learn and grow as a person. It is an experience for kids who don’t know about wildlife, forestry and even livestock. It also gives kids a chance to stand out. I have heard from many people that without FFA they wouldn’t be doing what they do today.
I think FFA is one of the most useful clubs you could have during your high school years. It teaches everyone great values, like using prayer before the beginning of any situation, working together to get a job done, and always making everyone feel welcome. It also teaches good morals, such as respecting adults, friends and ourselves.
In saying all of this I would like to give thanks to my FFA teachers, family and friends for inspiring me to be part of the FFA. It has truly been a blessing to me.
Agriculture is an important part of everyday life not only in Effingham but worldwide. Agriculture is an important part of our economic future as well as in American life.
FFA represents great values of America. Being in FFA has not only taught me agriculture skills but life lessons as well. In agriculture class I have learned a variety of things as simple as tool safety or as complicated as identifying trees and leaves.
Agriculture is a great learning environment because not only do you get classroom time but also hands-on learning, we like to call these “ag experiences,” because that is truly what it is with each trip there’s a different experience. While in FFA I was able to participate in many contests, conventions and conferences. A major event is the livestock fair. In our FFA chapter we work hard but also play hard.
Hard work in FFA also pays off. I learned this lesson by training cows for the fair. Going to the stall everyday to train my cow required a great deal of patience, time and effort, trying times did occur and bad days came but you have to keep working so when fair time comes you have worked hard enough to prove you are the best.
A great role model for all of our chapter members is Mr. Mock he has taught each kid in FFA a lesson that relates to agriculture and life. He is the kindest, generous, most caring person you could ever meet. Mr. Mock believes in giving everyone a chance, a fair chance and also believes in making you work for what you get. I am proud to call myself a Future Farmer of America.
South Effingham FFA