LOUISVILLE (Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015/National FFA Organization) – The West Jackson Middle FFA Chapter in Georgia has been named the 2015 National Outstanding Middle School Chapter Award winner at the 88th National FFA Convention & Expo in Louisville, Kentucky.
The nation’s top five three-star chapters in the division competed for the award on Wednesday, October 28th. Each of the top five middle school chapters chose two members to give a 10 minute presentation. This presentation highlighted the nine activities that were featured on the chapter’s National Chapter Award. After the presentation, the judges were given 10 more minutes to ask the students questions about the activities, their presentation, and the application. West Jackson Middle FFA received a plaque in an onstage ceremony during the convention and expo’s second general session on Thursday, October 29th.
One of the presenters for West Jackson Middle FFA was current President, Savannah Van Buren. Savannah had this to say about going to the National FFA Convention, “The National FFA Convention was a magical experience for me. The sessions were entertaining and inspiring at the same time!” She went on to share, “I got to go on stage for the Outstanding Middle School division, and we won! Peyton Puckett and I were very prepared, and I'm so happy that we won. If you are ever offered a chance to go to National Convention, take it: you won't regret it.”
Jackson County Comprehensive High freshman and former West Jackson Middle FFA President, Peyton Puckett, was the other presenter of WJMS FFA. This was the second straight year that West Jackson Middle FFA has been recognized by the National FFA Organization as one of the top five middle school chapters, and Puckett was a presenter for WJMS FFA last year as well. Peyton shared, “Winning outstanding middle school was one of the best feelings in the world. The nomination its self was great but winning was outstanding! After preparing for months to promote our last year’s activities, the win was wonderful!” She went on to say, “I am so proud of our middle school and what we have achieved in the past few years and winning this really signifies just how much we have accomplished.”
West Jackson Middle FFA sells custom wreaths as a fundraiser, so hosting a wreath-making class seemed like a natural fit for their Program of Activities. FFA members not only learned how to make wreaths but also learned how to critique work and give constructive criticism. They also teach community members how to make the wreaths.
The Outstanding Middle School award, along with all National Chapter awards, is sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. It is one of the many ways FFA members accomplish the FFA mission and succeed in making a difference in their communities and the lives of others.
The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 629,367 student members who belong to one of 7,757 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
Savannah Van Buren is the daughter of David and Margaret Van Buren, and Peyton Puckett is the daughter of Robbie and Shawn Puckett.
Pictured from left to right: Peyton Puckett, April Davis, and Savannah Van Buren.