From left, Cody Gibbs; Breeyanna Hooper; Heather Lacovara and Leslie Zimmerman will be representing Eureka County High School at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis this October.

Students from Eureka County High School will be representing the school, chapter, and community at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana this October.

Breeyanna Hooper has earned a gold emblem from the National FFA for her Proficency award work in Environmental Science and Natural Resources. She has spent the past several years working on removing invasive species from the various water sources in the Duckwater area through the Duckwater tribal youth employment program. Breeyanna maintained meticulous records and completed a detailed application, in addition to interviewing with a panel of experts regarding her project. She took her work even further by researching ways that threatened and endangered species may be protected and worked with a fish biologist to create an agriscience fair project to study the effects of a hatchery environment on the Railroad Valley Springfish. The National FFA Association is awarding a $250 scholarship to Ms. Hooper for her efforts. Breeyanna plans to attend Great Basin College and prepare for a career in Natural Resources.

Heather Lacovara has been selected to represent Nevada as our National Officer Candidate. The process to become a national officer is arduous, with the candidates – each state FFA association can submit one individual member annually – taking part in an extensive interview process with the National FFA Officer Nominating Committee.

Candidates will be evaluated through seven rounds on five national officer competencies: character, influence, areas of knowledge, communication, and being a team player. All rounds provide candidates the opportunity to show who they are on a personal level. Specific rounds are also designed to enable candidates to show their skills in preparing and delivering speeches, facilitating workshops, advocating to stakeholders, and creating quality written content. It takes a highly motivated person to become a successful National FFA Officer—an opportunity afforded to few members.

Cody Gibbs, of the Diamond Mountain FFA Chapter, is one of only 4 members from the Silver State receiving the American FFA Degree this October. Only FFA members who have demonstrated the highest level of commitment to FFA and made significant accomplishments in their supervised agricultural experiences are eligible for the American FFA Degree.

The American FFA Degree is awarded at the National FFA Convention & Expo each year to less than one percent of FFA members, making it one of the organization’s highest honors. Requirements to earn the honor are lengthy. In addition to their degree certificate, each recipient receives a gold American FFA Degree key.

Diamond Mountain Chapter Advisor, Leslie Zimmerman was selected to serve as a National Teacher Ambassador for FFA for the second year in a row. The National Teacher Ambassadors for FFA training was a two and a half-day event where teachers from across the country came together in Indianapolis over the summer to learn about National FFA Organization updates, resources and opportunities. Additionally, teachers networked with other teachers and National FFA Staff, developed workshops for delivery within regional/state conferences, conventions and trainings, and offered suggestions to improve current available resources. Mrs. Zimmerman will share the content of her training through workshops and presentations for other agriculture instructors throughout Nevada and the Western Region of the National Association of Agriculture Instructors.

Agriculture programs prepare students for high-demand careers in cutting edge industries like biotechnology, renewable energies, engineering, food production, and more. They also teach students how to be leaders and prepare them to take on the challenges of the next generation. FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agriculture education.