Wyatt DeJong, Winner High School FFA advisor, is pleased to have six of his students earn the American FFA Degree.
The six graduates of Winner High School who received the honor are Calah Covey, Payton Eagle, Nick Hossle, Sam Hossle, Lucas Jedlicki and Lesley Soles.
The American FFA Degree is awarded at the National FFA Convention & Expo each year to less than 1% of FFA members making it one of the organization’s highest honors. In addition to their degree, each recipient receives a gold American FFA Degree key. To be eligible for this degree, each member must have been an active member for the past three years (36 months), have a record of satisfactory participation in the activities on the chapter and state levels, earned at least $10,000 and productively invested $7,500 or earned and productively invested $2,000 and worked 2,250 hours in excess of scheduled class time in their Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAE), have participated in at least 50 hours of community service within at least three different community service activities, and have met the minimum scholastic requirements.
This year, 38 FFA members from South Dakota will be awarded their degree at the 90th National FFA Convention & Expo this October in Indianapolis, Ind. Of those 38 members, Winner FFA has 6 members that earned their degree.
Calah’s SAE is in the area of beef production entrepreneurship where she raises registered Hereford cattle that she shows and sells. Calah has increased her herd to more than 30 cows over the past six years and it has opened many doors for her at the local, state, and national levels. Calah has received many scholarships through her project and is currently at SDSU for Agricultural Education.
Payton’s SAE is in the area of equine science entrepreneurship where she trains and manages nine horses for both pleasure riding and advanced competitive rodeo. Payton has taken her work with horses on to the next level as she competes on the SDSU rodeo team and is pursuing her education to become a veterinarian.
Nick’s SAE is in the areas of beef production placement and forage production placement where he has accumulated more than 3,000 hours over the past five years working for his family’s farming operation. Nick works with all aspects of the operation and is currently enrolled at SDSU for Agricultural Education.
Sam’s SAE is in the areas of beef production entrepreneurship & placement, agricultural services placements, and agricultural production sales placement. Sam raises Hereford and Maine-Anjou cattle that he uses for showing at local, state, and national shows. He has also accumulated many hours working at DeJong Ranch, Olson Fencing, and Winner Food Center. Sam is currently enrolled at MTI on a Build Dakota Scholarship studying Precision Agriculture Technology.
Lucas’s SAE is in the areas of beef production placement and entrepreneurship. He has amassed more than 5,000 hours working at Assman Lovejoy Cattle Company and Mathis Brothers while he was in high school. Lucas has developed his passion for raising cattle and has worked extensively on bettering his understanding of all aspects of beef cattle management.
Lesley’s SAE is in the areas of food service management, home and community development, and agricultural business management placement. Lesley worked more than 1,000 hours at Elder Inn while in high school where she primarily worked in the food service area. In addition, she has also had a summer internship with Country Pride Cooperative while she was in college. Lesley is currently enrolled at SDSU in Agricultural Education.