Twin Valley FFA educates Farm Show patrons

Photo by Roxanne Richardson The bat board definitely caught interest as people walked past the different educational boards.
Photo by Roxanne Richardson Lyle and Jackie Wright, Florida, accompanied by Cindy Hooks, learned things from the FFA education exhibits.

Twin Valley High School FFA students educated attendees at the Pennsylvania Farm Show and competed for awards.

Twin Valley FFA was awarded a 16th place ribbon for its educational board on bats. The students also earned a 13th place ribbon for a Agriculture Education Exhibit, Alternative Energy: The Fuels of Tomorrow Are The Fuels of Today.

I am always proud of my students. This year, several officers and student members worked over the summer and during the school year to develop our educational window display that was up at Farm Show. Our theme was, Alternative Energy, said Nicole Weaver, advisor.

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While looking at the exhibits, attendee Cindy Hooks noticed one of the FFAs Agriculture Education Exhibits in particular. Pictures of bats showed the differences between a healthy bat and one afflicted with a disease known as White Nose Syndrome.

It was interesting to learn that there was a bat disease in Pennsylvania, said Hooks. I was surprised at how small the bat houses were. The bat houses Ive seen before have been at state parks and theyre all real big and need a lot of room. This one was just a little small one you could put under the eaves of your home.

The board explained what the disease is and how it affects Pennsylvania. One of the ways you can help is by building bat boxes on your property. According to the information, if you see winter-flying bats, multiple dead bats, or if you or your neighbors repeatedly find dead bats in a particular area please report the incidents to the nearest game commission region office: Southeast Regional Office 610-926-3136 and Northeast Regional Office 570-675-1143.

According to Weaver, FFA helps a student to develop positive personal skills, leadership skills, interpersonal skills, and the ability to problem solve and determine solutions for problems they are presented. It develops the student as a whole person and an advocate for agriculture in their community.

The FFA held its Midwinter Convention during the Farm Show where select students were awarded the Pennsylvania FFA Keystone Degree. The Keystone Degree is the highest FFA Degree that a member can receive from the PA FFA Association. It is based on academic achievement, leadership and chapter involvement, community service and completion of an SAE with a minimum of 300 hours or $1,000 earned or invested in the project. The following Twin Valley FFA members received their degree at the Farm Show: Andrew Crew, Brooke Reider, Sarah McTish, Dalton Kubovcsak, Heather Gardner, Steph Kurtz, Shannon Dieffenbach, Alexandria Kern (All Seniors).

Additional members received a complimentary FFA Jacket valued at $55 from the PA FFA Alumni Association. These FFA members competed in a contest where they had to write an essay on what the FFA jacket means to them. The following Twin Valley FFA members received a jacket: Elyssa Kishpaugh, Amber Nuse (Both Freshmen).

To learn more about FFA, go to www.ffa.org.