The Riverbank High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) recently announced their new officers, Lorena Arellano, Reporter, Rigoberto Rocha, Sentinel, Emmanuel Estrada, Historian, Guadalupe Jiminez, Treasurer, Cecilia Leon, Secretary, Nathan Rummerfield, Vice President and Marissa Garza, President.
“It is definitely a lot of responsibility but I can handle it,” stated Garza about being the new President. “It has also been really fun because we did a lot of different activities. I have actually learned to speak more in front of people. Before this I would not be able to go up there. It has helped me a lot and has been really fun. I will continue with FFA. I am looking forward to putting this on my college applications.”
This is the first full school year that Agriculture Instructor and FFA Advisor, Dustin Parson has completed and this is his first teaching job. He began his teaching career with Riverbank High School in April after the previous Ag Teacher left. He did not have too many students to work with so he had to hit the campus in search of an FFA Officer team. The club has grown from about 100 members last year to 140 FFA members for the 2017-18 school year, which they hope to increase next year.
“We were able to get members more involved through classroom stuff and activities that we do,” said Parson. “It (this year) has been really good. It has been so rewarding. Some of the students just want to do more stuff and want to be a part of something bigger than they are. It is really fulfilling to work with students who want to work hard for extracurricular activities.”
The Riverbank FFA had its final chapter meeting of the year and with that they had a barbecue of hot dogs, chips, and a drink that family members were invited to attend. To the surprise of the officers, they were presented with new jackets that had their names on them during a jacket ceremony presented by Garza and Rummerfield.
“We have many different conferences students can attend just to hone out their leadership skills and get them going in high school,” added Parson. “It really prepares them to be self-motivated, self-thinkers and really just gets them to grow up in a leadership role and get them involved with other things.”
The new FFA officers will attend the officer retreat this summer on June 10 and 11 where they learn leadership skills and participate in team building activities. Parson explained that the retreat will allow the officers to plan the chapter meetings and activities for the following year.
“The officer team wanted to express how excited they are to start the year and get more students involved with the chapter,” stated Parson.
Four students with the RHS FFA, Austin Schurer, Rummerfield, Garza, and Jiminez will be showing four hogs this year at the Livestock competition during the Stanislaus County Fair in July. The students will be participating on the following dates: Saturday, July 14, Haul in the Pigs; Monday, July 16, FFA Market Swine starting at 8 a.m.; Tuesday, July 17, FFA Swine Showmanship starting at 8 a.m.; Saturday, July, 21, 54th Annual Junior Livestock Auction (Market Hogs) which begins at 8 a.m. at the Thurman Pavilion; and on Sunday, July 22 the Awards Assembly will be held at 9 a.m. at the Variety Free Stage Area.
Students that are interested in participating in the FFA must enroll in an Agriculture Class.