11/15/10 — Local schools' FFA chapters bring home national honors

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Local schools' FFA chapters bring home national honors

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on November 15, 2010 1:46 PM

Students from four area high schools were among more than 650 candidates attending the 83rd National FFA Convention held recently in Indianapolis.

Two of the schools -- Southern Wayne and Rosewood -- returned with several honors, including national chapter awards. Charles B. Aycock and Spring Creek high schools were also represented at the convention.

Rosewood was given three stars in the National Chapter Award category, the highest honor awarded by the national organization, while Southern Wayne was a two-star winner in the same category.

Rosewood received a $2,500 check for being one of the top chapters in the nation in community service hours as part of the National FFA Million Hour Challenge.

Rosewood student Chelsea Sawkiw was also a national delegate and had all of her expenses covered to attend the convention.

The convention offered 47 FFA proficiency award categories.

Two students at Southern Wayne were named among the four finalists in their respective categories. Each received a plaque and $500 cash award.

Jeffrey Grantham was a national finalist in the Poultry Production-Entrepreneurship/ Placement Proficiency award program, sponsored by Tractor Supply Company and the National FFA Foundation.

Grantham works with his grandfather, who has 80,000 broiler birds. Starting out with small jobs around the farm, Grantham has moved onto bigger responsibilities, including studying his grandfather's record-keeping procedures. He also has worked on disease control, managing the poultry mortality and keeping litters under control, and aspires to have his own poultry operation within the next 10 years.

Andrew Johnson was a national finalist in the category of Specialty Crop Production -- Entrepreneurship/Placement Proficiency.

Long interested in the role tobacco has played in the area's agriculture history, his family grows 200 acres of the crop. Johnson has been involved in the seed selection, curing the tobacco and marketing it for sale.