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Seven Imperial FFA members earned their state degrees, from left, Lauren Prior, Brady Gittlein, Sydney Vetter, Emma Ferguson, Ryelee Christensen, Kayla Schilke and Stevie Johnson. (Courtesy photo)

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Imperial FFA’s state champion Vet Science Team and coaches include, from left, Coach Tracy Heathers, Sydney Vetter, Stevie Johnson, Carissa Hill, Emma DeGrasse and Coach Gene Heathers. (Courtesy photo)

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Imperial Market Plan Team, which won first in state, includes, from left, Sydney Vetter, Kayla Schilke and Ryelee Christensen. (Courtesy photo)

Imperial FFA collects three state championships; seven earn state degrees

Lincoln and a full three days of convention activities with a pair of state championship teams and an individual proficiency winner.
    Imperial’s Vet Science and Marketing Plan teams, and Molly Luhrs’ specialty crop proficiency all were first place at last week’s convention.
    The teams will compete at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis in October.
    While being an individual state champion, Luhrs’ proficiency will move on to be judged on the national level in late July and if it is selected as one of the top four, she will  go to Indianapolis to interview and compete to win her proficiency area on a national level.
    Forty-one students represented the Imperial FFA at last week’s convention, which included leadership development, ag-related and speaking competition.
    Here’s a recap provided by FFA Advisor Jeremy Vlasin.
    Members of the state champion Vet Science Team are Stevie Johnson, Carissa Hill, Emma DeGrasse and Sydney Vetter. Johnson finished third overall individually. The team was coached by Gene and Tracy Heathers.
    The purpose of the veterinary science career development event, Vlasin said, is to promote college and career readiness by providing opportunities to develop technical knowledge and demonstrate practical skills in the field of veterinary science. Participants in this competition demonstrate technical competency with small and large animals in the areas of anatomy and physiology, clinical procedures, identification, Health and safety and medical terminology.
    There were a total of 36 Vet Science teams at state convention this year.
    Members of the state champion Market Plan Team include Kayla Schilke, Sydney Vetter and Ryelee Christensen.
    This is the second consecutive year for an Imperial FFA state champion Market Plan Team.
    Starting in the agribusiness class, team members had to take a local business and find a way to add value to that local business and then market that value-added product, Vlasin noted. They have to write an eight-page plan and give a 15-minute presentation based on their plan. They also are required to answer questions after their presentation is over as well as know basic marketing terms.
    This year’s team wrote a plan on AK Acres. Added value created for the business involved entering the ready-to-eat popcorn market (plans are fictitious-AK Acres isn’t really entering the ready-to-eat popcorn market, the team just shows how it could be possible if marketed correctly).
    Imperial was one of 10 teams in the market plan competition.
    Another highlight of the convention was the seven State FFA Degrees earned by Imperial chapter members. State Degrees recipients included Lauren Prior, Brady Gittlein, Sydney Vetter, Emma Ferguson, Ryelee Christensen, Kayla Schilke and Stevie Johnson.
    The chapter also had numerous teams in the top five and individuals in the top 10.
    State runner-up Agriscience Team—Kamrie Dillan, Courtney Odens, Lindsey Mendenhall and Alexis Richmond. Richmond and Mendenhall were both top 10 individuals with Alexis finishing seventh and Lindsey finishing sixth.
    Ag Sales Team fourth place—Emma Ferguson, Brady Gittlein, Jozie Schilke and Brooklyn Christensen
    Food Science Team fourth place—Kayla Schilke, Katelyn Leibhart, Valerie Herbert and Alexis Richmond. Schilke finished as the state runner-up individual. The team was coached by Carolina Ramos.

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