COLUMBIA — Union County Career Center (CATE) agricultural education students attended the South Carolina FFA-sponsored State Legislators Appreciation Ceremony in Columbia Feb. 19.
In attendance were Brendon Cromer, Hunter Cook, Madison Lawson, Cheyenne Anderson, Ashley Gregory, and Zach Valentine. The students — accompanied by Cleveland Jackson, agricultural education instructor and FFA adviser at Union County CATE Center — began the day by visiting S.C. House District 42 Rep. Mike Anthony. They were introduced to the members of the House of Representatives while in session.
Following the visits, the group joined the hundreds of FFA members and advisers from throughout South Carolina on the north steps of the State Capitol for a special recognition ceremony. The event got under way with the Presentation of Colors by Manning FFA Color Guard. The group was lead in the Pledge of Allegiance by Cameron Padgett, State FFA Vice President.
The State FFA Officers presented the prestigious Honorary State FFA Degree to Stephanie Kolok and Mike Shealy, with the SC Forestry Commission and Maureen Tiller, Principal at Clinton High School. The purpose of the Honorary State degree is to recognize individuals who have rendered outstanding service to agricultural education and the FFA program.
SC Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers presented the Governors Proclamation to the State FFA Officers on behalf of Gov. Haley. This was in recognition of National FFA Week Feb. 15-22, 2014.
State Sen. Daniel B. Verdin of Laurens, Chairman of the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee and State Rep. Nelson L. Hardwick of Horry County, Chairman of the House Agriculture, Natural Resources & Environmental Affairs Committee, both gave remarks to the FFA members in attendance and presented a Concurrent Resolution of Recognition and Commendation to the State FFA Officers on behalf of all the members of the SC General Assembly.
The 2013-14 state FFA officers conducted the ceremony at the South Carolina State House. They are: Anna Mink, State President, from the Aiken chapter; Shelby Wayne, State Secretary from the McBee chapter; Savannah Vickery, State Vice President from the Pendleton chapter; Karley Young State Vice President from the Clinton chapter; Randi Sims, State Vice President from the Lakewood chapter; and Cameron Padgett, State Vice President from the Pelion chapter.
The week of George Washington’s birthday was designated as National FFA Week in 1947 at a National FFA Board of Directors meeting. FFA Week always runs from Saturday to Saturday and encompasses Washington’s Birthday.
The FFA positively influences the young people of America by developing character and leadership skills, and preparing members for successful careers. FFA members are the leaders of tomorrow. Through agricultural education and hands-on learning, FFA members are preparing for more than 300 career opportunities in the food, fiber and natural resources industries of agriculture. With more than 579,500 members, the organization has a history of service and a legacy of leadership.
This story was submitted by the Union County CATE Center.