BROOKINGS, S.D. – The State FFA Degree, the highest degree conferred by the South Dakota FFA, was presented to 267 agricultural education students at the 2018 South Dakota FFA Convention. Certain students rise to the top as star finalists. These individuals spend countless hours working on their projects and enhancing their potential for future jobs by gaining hands-on experience and developing technical skills. After a review of the students’ supervised agricultural experience program and records, four finalists were selected in each category prior to state convention. The finalists interviewed in front of a panel and the most outstanding were selected to be the State Star Farmer, Star in Agribusiness, Star in Placement, and Star in Agriscience. Each State Star will receive a $300 cash award and the finalists each receive $75. Congratulations to the SD FFA Stars!
The results are as follows:
- State Star Farmer — Jarret Haven, Northwestern Area; sponsored by Farm Credit Services of America.
- State Star in Agribusiness — Kristin Kotas, Bridgewater-Emery; sponsored by Farm Credit Services of America.
- State Star in Ag Placement – Mitchell Healy, Harrisburg; sponsored by the Dan Streff Family.
- State Star in Agriscience — Sadie VanderWal, Northewestern Area; sponsored by Glacial Lakes Energy.
Finalists and winners in all 4 areas are as follows:
- Star Farmer finalists — Danielle Houghtaling, Doland; Isaac Kolousek, Wessington Springs; Brandon Volmer, Winner; and winner Jarret Haven, Northwestern, and John Hanssen with Farm Credit Services of America.
- Star in Ag Business finalists – Camden Bialas, Parker; Kayla Smeenk, Harrisburg; Jordan Burge, Sturgis, winner — Kristin Kotas, Bridgewater-Emery, and John Hanssen with Farm Credit Services of America.
- Star in Ag Placement finalists – Blake Olson, Parker; Kadyn Nolz, West Central; Kaysee Christensen, Beresford, winner Mitchell Healy, Harrisburg and sponsors Dan & Karen Streff
- Star in Agriscience finalists — Blake Pulse, McCook Central; Connor Thaler, Beresford; Tanner Peterson, McCook Central; and winner Sadie Vanderwal, Northwestern.
District Star Greenhands are sophomores who were recognized for an outstanding start to their Supervised Agriculture Experience Project as being top in each of their FFA districts. These awards were sponsored by Central Farmers Cooperative. District Star Greeehands are: Tessa Erdmann, Groton; Kassandra Knutson, Viborg-Hurley; Laney Mackaben, Sturgis; Mitchell Vander Wal, Northwestern; Gage Gullickson, Flandreau; and Central Farmers Cooperative