Progress is the Focus For Westview FFA

Progress is the Focus For Westview FFA
Posted on 02/22/2023
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The Westview FFA Chapter has been focusing on progress – both within the club and out in the community.
The team spent the first semester representing Westview High School in several Career Development [CDE] and Leadership Development Event [LDE] competitions. They took home the 1st place spot in the Horse Judging competition for the West Tennessee Region. As a team competing regionally, they scored 4th in Ag Communications competition, 6th in Conduct of Chapter Meetings event, and 8th in Livestock Judging. Abigail Colarullo brought home a 2nd place win for Extemporaneous Speaking and will advance to State. Abigail Collie was 5th in region for Prepared Public Speaking, and Brent Pearce scored 7th in the Employment Skills competition. The group also participated in the Land Evaluation event.
The Chapter has experienced an uptick in FFA membership and student involvement activities.
Abigail Colarullo is the current Chapter President and the West Tennessee’s Regional Secretary for FFA. It has been many years since a student at Westview High represented the school by holding an office within Tennessee FFA. A Senior this year, Colarullo has a unique point of view to see the club’s progress, potential, and why FFA is gaining new attention from Westview students.
“FFA at Westview High does seem to have a new momentum. I think it has to do with progress. After COVID shut things down for schools for a long time, I think the first event that marked this new interest was when our Chapter received the Platinum PLOW Award at State Convention last year. And we were also able to start getting back out to students and the community again. We started thinking about new ways to help support community needs,” Colarullo explained.
“Plus, we’re not afraid to put our blue jeans on and get to work. I think a lot of us like to show that we know what hard work means,” added Colarullo.
Focus on community needs has certainly been an area of concentration for students.
Motivated by the desire to assist local response efforts following the December 2021 tornado that affected the region, FFA members and students studying various sections of Agriculture at Westview have been working to build framing for a mobile solar trailer for communities in the region to use in the event of a disaster. The system is intended to act as a power source for emergency workers, communications teams, and volunteers to continue recovery efforts when connection to power has been disrupted. Under the advisement of engineering professors at UT Martin, the project is set to be completed this year.
Westview High School’s FFA Advisors are Kyle Rogers and David Hochreiter.
Along with competitions, classwork, and learning new skills, students are involved in many projects to assist the school.
Rogers’ classes built new trophy cases and picture frames to showcase Westview’s basketball and football teams’ State Championship accomplishments.
“Working on projects that support the school is fun for students. They like to see real world utilization of their accomplishments. They never shy away from tackling a project, helping to clean up, or jumping in whenever the need arises. We’ve got a group that loves to be involved,” said Rogers.
Hochreiter’s classes recently built a doghouse for an upcoming fundraising event for FFA alumni.
Presenting all students with the chance for hands-on learning is important, according to Hochreiter.
"Giving every student the opportunity to build something, even if they aren’t in a traditional shop or carpentry class, shows all students that they can still develop and apply those same skills - no matter what agriculture pathway they choose to take,” Hochreiter said.
The season is heating up with upcoming regional contests to include competitions in Upper and Lower Division Skills, Forestry, and Poultry Judging. Several students will also compete in Extemporaneous Speaking, Farm Business Management, and Bull Pen Challenge at State Convention in Gatlinburg on March 19.
Collarullo said that the school’s faculty and the support of the community are essential factors in the success of FFA at her school.
“Community engagement is so important, and our community is always there to lift us up. Additionally, faculty and staff at our schools support us however they can. Our teachers are so understanding about the time required to attend competitions, events, and complete FFA projects. And you won’t find a more supportive Principal than Coach Brian Allen,” acknowledged Collarullo.
FFA Advisor Kyle Rogers knows the future is bright for Westview FFA.
“Our current students stand out as a strong group. As teachers, we want to help students succeed. When you see students with the drive to enhance their communities and work hard to make big things happen at Westview High School, you feel very proud. We are proud of each and every student in our program,” said Rogers.

8 students stand behind blue doghouse that they built

Students welds metal frame with full welding garb on

Students attaches solar panels to the bed of a trailer
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