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Braxton FFA members earn State Degrees

Three BCHS Future Farmers of America recently learned they have earned State FFA Degrees. Daykayden Kirby, Molly Ratliff, and Julianna Rexroad each successfully completed requirements for the state degree, including the Supervised Educational Experience. Their SAEs covered a widely different range of interests.
Kirby, an upcoming senior, began working on his SAE during his freshman year. He explained that one of the requirements for completion of a Supervised Educational Experience is working a required number of unpaid hours or earning and investing a certain amount of money.
For his SAE, Kirby combined two activities: He washed trucks for Gerwig’s Trucking Company and he mowed and weed-eated. He explained that he spent the money he earned on supplies for his projects.
Kirby attributes much of his success in earning the state degree to all the people who helped him. “If it weren’t for the help of Mr. Porto and other students, I might not have made it,” he said.
Taking a different approach to her SAE, Ratliff followed the pathway of food safety and food science, which she noted “is a big part of agriculture.” Explaining why she chose this particular SAE, Ratliff said, “I wanted to choose one that gave me the ability to build better people skills.”
A graduating senior, Ratliff began her SAE working at Dairy Queen her sophomore year. She followed that with a job at Starbucks, and she finished by working at Mountaineer Food Bank. “At MFB, I started in the office but then moved out to the warehouse,” she explained. She especially like working at Mountaineer Food Bank because “they help communities all over our state.” Ratliff used the money she earned to pay for expenses related to work.
Julianna Rexroad used two animal-related activities to earn her state degree. This young woman, who just finished her junior year, bought a lamb each spring, raised it, exhibited it at the Braxton County Fair, and sold it. In addition, Rexroad owns a herd—six cows and one bull—of Limousin cattle. She noted, “This is actually the fourth year that I’ve owned my own herd.” Rexroad uses the money she gets when she sells the lamb each year as well as what she receives for the occasional cattle she sells. “I use the money I earn to buy the new lamb each year and to buy new cattle and for food.” She explained.
All three of these State Degree Future Farmers of America appreciate what belonging to FFA has done for them. Kirby attributed many of his achievements to FFA membership. “What I have gained from FFA is leadership, friendship, trust, and communication,” he noted. “I have learned to be a great leader from being a FFA officer for the past two years.I have gained friendship from many places we have traveled and from others in the chapter.’
Continuing, Kirby added, “I have learned to be more trusting by having others take responsibility for things in FFA. And I have learned communication by traveling and being placed in different groups with others and having to interact with others.”
Ratliff commented that FFA has given her “so many opportunities.” She added, “I’ve made so many memories through the organization. It has helped me to be more well-rounded and to develop leadership skills.”
Among the rewards Rexroad sees in FFA membership is “having the opportunity to travel.” She said, “I’ve made new friends from all across America. [FFA] membership has also [given us] a lot of scholarship opportunities, and it has opened my eyes to the different careers I can pursue in agriculture and the different opportunities offered in those careers.”
After noting that he is pleased with the success of these three agriculture students, advisor Josh Porto explained that the three make a total of 18 of his FFA members who have earned WV FFA State Degrees.


BCMH’s CEO Karen Bowling
elected to National Health Board

BCMH’s Karen Bowling, vice president of care delivery and transformation for the West Virginia University Health System and president and CEO of WVU Medicine’s Braxton County Memorial Hospital and Summersville Regional Medical Center, has been elected to a three-year term on the 340B Health Board of Directors.

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Two 2020 Braxton graduates
rewarded for perfect attendance

Last Wednesday Braxton County seniors reported to the high school gym to pick up their caps and gowns. Two of those seniors, Brandon Gray and Micaiah Coffman, received quite a surprise. Sitting on the gym floor was an impressive array of camping equipment and other items including two kayaks. Signs indicated that it was for them. The surprised young men received the gifts, which were provided by the high school and Napa Auto Parts, as a reward for having perfect attendance.

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Board of Education reviews policies, approves budget

On May 19, the Braxton County Board of Education conducted their regular meeting virtually. The meeting was called to order at 6:00 pm by President Jill Cooper who opened the meeting with a moment of silence in memory of former board member and educator, Ernie Moore.

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