Wyoming FFA State Convention is a Success for the Paintrock FFA

Caroline Schlattmann, Chapter Reporter

During the year of 2020, the pandemic took a vast toll on RHS’s extracurricular activities and sports, especially our FFA chapter. Year round, members of the Paintrock FFA chapter prepare projects, study criteria required for their events, and attend practices every week as they prepare for the district, regional, and state competitions that happen in the months leading up to the end of the school year. However, our members didn’t get the opportunity to compete in Cheyenne last year, as all conventions under the FFA Association were cancelled. Chapters all across the nation were disappointed in the loss of their chances to compete, but instead of letting that get the best of them, our FFA chapters pulled together stronger than ever, determined to give back to the communities that constantly supported them, and continued to work on their skills for the following year.

Thanks to the diligent efforts of our 2020-2021 Wyoming FFA State Officers, we were able to have our state convention once again, giving chapters an opportunity to compete against each other. Even so, our Vet Science, Ag Mechanics, Parliamentary Procedure, Conduct of Chapter Meetings, Employment Skills, and Farm Business Management teams had to compete in their events before the state convention. In these contests, the Paintrock FFA chapter had some outstanding teams, and individuals, who placed in the overall results. In Vet Science, Dailyn Zierolf was the seventh-high individual overall, beating over 100 other participants. Placing third overall was the Parliamentary Procedure team. The competitors included Dailyn Zierolf, Valeria DeNiz, Breana Riley, Eva Stone, Griffin Zapata, and Kieri VanDeest.

This is what Dailyn Zierolf had to say about the Parli Pro team’s performance: “For being our first year doing Parli Pro, in addition to having two new members who haven’t had any experience in this contest, we did really well. We ran a pretty close to perfect card during the preliminary round and we were all really excited to hear that we made it to the finals. During the final card we did have a few hiccups that hindered our performance, but we were able to finish the card under time, getting everything in except one debate. I’m very happy with our third place status, and excited to see what we can do next year with more practice.”

Cash Duncan placed seventh in the Employment Skills contest, where individual members undergo a series of interviews, and are tested on their active-listening, problem-solving, and decision making skills. In the Farm Business Management competition, which was coached by Tony Anson, members must complete a written test, as well as a team activity where a written or oral report is required. Our chapter’s team placed fifth out of the state, while Hayden Paxton was the ninth-high individual.

At the annual State FFA Convention, the Paintrock FFA chapter’s Poultry Judging, Livestock Judging, and Sales teams were able to compete in Cheyenne. In Poultry Judging, the team placed third in reasons and fifth overall. This team was made up of four sophomores, including Avery Lewis, Trenton Coronel, Dylan Alexander, and Caroline Schlattmann. The Sales team, which consisted of members Dylan Alexander, Ryan Hoyt, Cash Duncan, and Porter Duncan, placed first in the team activity and were reserve champions overall. Porter Duncan was able to attain a perfect score on his individual sales activity.

Moving into further honors and awards, Ryan Hoyt earned proficiency awards in the following: silver in Entrepreneurship for Beef Production, silver in Diversified Agricultural Production, bronze in Placement for Diversified Crop Production, gold in Forage Production, and silver in Grain Production. In our chapter, three seniors, Blake Mautz, Shelby Crissman, and Cash Duncan, were awarded the Wyoming FFA State Degree.

“I’m glad I entered five proficiencies this year. What I had to do was fill out records on my AET account, then submit an application for the awards.” Hoyt stated.

As a whole, the Paintrock FFA chapter earned the 3-Star Chapter award, which is the highest award possible for chapters in our state. Another honor our local chapter was given was the Outstanding Chapter Model of Innovation Strengthening Agriculture award. Our chapter was given this award due to our members’ efforts in making gift baskets for the local farmers within our community. To accomplish this, our chapter members met and, from scratch, made and packaged a variety of treats into gift baskets, then proceeded to hand deliver them to those who make substantial contributions to our surrounding ag community.

After both watching and competing at our 2021 FFA State Convention, this is what our Paintrock FFA chapter President, Cash Duncan, had to say about it: “It was really good to get back together as a state and compete in person. All of our teams did well and I was proud of our small and young chapter.”