“Learning to Do, Doing to Learn, Earning to Live, Living to Serve” is the motto for Elkin High School’s Future Farmers of America Club, or FFA.
Community service through hands-on experience is at the heart of what the new club hopes to achieve in the coming months.
Formed in August 2012, the club currently has 32 members advised by agriculture teacher, Clarence Edwards. According to Edwards, the group is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of students by helping them become “community leaders and having a successful agriculture education.”
Edwards choose to advise the club because he saw a good opportunity to expand student’s knowledge and develop life-long skills. The group meets once a month in his classroom to discuss community service projects or fundraiser ideas.
The club has already held a fall plant sale in October which raised over 600 dollars which will be used to sponsor families for Christmas through Elkin City Schools. Another plant sale will be held in mid to late March to sell garden plants such as tomatoes, peppers, and squash. Any funds raised will support local charities.
The club also plans to form a community service project tentatively titled the “Helping Hands Program” which will consist of groups of at least four students at a time doing yard work or basic home maintenance in the Elkin area. Proceeds will also support local charities.
Although FFA is a club, it closely supports the goals of Edwards’ agriculture curriculum. High school agriculture programs must have three parts: a course of study or curriculum, Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE), and a FFA club. Under the SAE requirements, students must perform at least 15 hours of hands-on agriculturally-related work. Work performed must not be for personal gain and cannot be performed for relatives. Student performance in SAE forms part of the final grade for Edwards’ classes: Horticulture I and II, Environmental and Natural Resources I and II, and Agri-science Application.
The club has been warmly received at Elkin High School and officers were chosen in August: Jamey Cranford – President, Carson Billings – Vice President, Madison Durham – Secretary, Morgan Minton – Reporter, Kaylin Messick – Treasurer, and Luke Williams – Sentinel.
Edwards invites the public to visit the plant sale in March at the community garden on Main Street in Elkin, and hopes parents will encourage their students to join the club. “It’s a great way to learn and contribute to the community at the same time.”