Saturday, April 29, 2017

Lodge Grass High School seniors Gabby Plenty Hawk (left) and Isiaih Brown are Little Big Horn FFA’s most recent State Degree recipients.

Lodge Grass students Plenty Hawk, Brown earn top state FFA degree

Lodge Grass’ Little Big Horn FFA is on a roll with two State FFA Degree recipients for 2017: high school seniors Gabby Plenty Hawk and Isiaih Brown. In earning the top state FFA award, Brown and Plenty Hawk follow in the footsteps of last year’s winner Tori North Peigan, who earned Lodge Grass High School’s first State Degree in about three decades.
 
To get the State Degree, FFA members need to log 100 hours of community service and earn more than $3,500 from a “supervised ag experience” – income from ranching or agriculture. They also must earn a Greenhand Degree, which has its own list of requirements that require public speaking, school work and memorization.
 
Plenty Hawk’s agricultural projects included raising and bringing market swine and beef to state county fairs for the past four years. Brown specialized in market swine, which he brought to fairs for five years.
 
“Those are the kids who pursue a degree in agriculture,” said Ty Neal, advisor for the Little Big Horn FFA. “The only [higher] degree they can get after that is the [American FFA Degree], which is at the national level.”
 
Plenty Hawk, Neal said, “came in as a very shy freshman who only competed in livestock.” Now, he said, “she has blossomed into a young adult” who’s been a chapter officer for three years. She’s reliable and dependable, he said, and always shows up to FFA community service events.
 
Brown, Neal continued, “has developed a lot from a leadership standpoint.” Like Plenty Hawk, he said, Brown started as someone who didn’t talk a lot, and also has grown into someone both dependable and reliable. “When you need him,” Neal said, “he’s there.”
 
As the team finishes their season following Montana FFA’s 87th Annual State Convention in Great Falls – held March 22-25 – Neal said they plan to “continue to grow and continue to get better.”
 
Little Big Horn FFA’s annual banquet is scheduled at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10 in the Lodge Grass High School metal shop.
 
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