January 2019

Sectional Speaking Finals

Atwater FFA Students Qualify for Regional Speaking Finals

The Atwater High School FFA joined over 160 FFA speaking contestants, representing fifteen high school agriculture programs throughout Merced and Mariposa counties at the annual Merced-Mariposa FFA Public Speaking Sectional Finals at Merced College January 26th. The top four individual finalists in each speaking contest advance to the regional prelims in February. Atwater FFA had five of the twenty sectional finalists advancing to the regional prelims next month.

Atwater High School agriculture program students Emma Garcia (1st overall) and Daniel Lopez (4th overall) will be moving onto the regional finals in the Impromptu Speaking contest. The impromptu speech is given without any preparation, any notes or other additional materials; it is a spontaneous reaction to an agriculture-related topic at hand which may introduce an interesting turn to the discussion. Adriana Lopez and Jaimie Colores also competed in the sectional finals.

Atwater High School agriculture freshman student Tristan Cardey (1st overall) qualified for the regional finals in the Creed contest. This event is designed to recognize outstanding FFA members for their ability to present the FFA Creed from memory and answer questions on the meaning and purpose of the FFA Creed. The event is just one way FFA members can develop their ability to communicate in a powerful, organized and professional manner. Members boost their self- confidence and earn recognition. 9th grade agriculture students Ned Prothro, Liliana Boesch, and Kate Brigham also competed in the section finals.

Atwater High School agriculture program junior Alyssa Carrillo placed 3rd overall in Prepared Public Speaking, qualifying her for the regional prelims. Student speeches covered topics that included gene editing, farm security, and food security within the agriculture industry. The contest for all participants involves a 6-8 minute speech on an agriculture related topic/issue, a written manuscript which is scored, and a question and answer period between the contestant and judges following the speech. Kaya Briscoe (5th overall), Haley Vargas, Cristal Venegas, and Michael Bray also competed in the sectional finals.

Atwater High School agriculture program junior Anessa Cardenas placed 4th overall in the Job Interview contest which qualified her for the regional finals. The Job Interview contest involves students completing a cover letter, resume, job application, and panel interview. This event emphasizes developing, practicing, and demonstrating skills needed when seeking employment.  Other Atwater FFA members that competed in the Job Interview contest included Marissa Nuño and Jose Montanez.

Atwater High School agriculture students Stephania Valdovinos (5th overall), Jennifer Velazquez (6th overall), Emmanuel Mejia (7th overall) place in the Extemporaneous Speaking contest. Contestants are presented with a choice of three questions related to agricultural current events and, in 30 minutes, prepare a seven-minute speech answering the selected question. Students may consult articles and evidence they gather prior to the contest, but may not use the Internet during preparation. Topics range from local-specific issues to national-world concerns relating to agriculture. Atwater High School agriculture student Elisabeth Garner also competed in the section finals.

Atwater High School FFA also had agriculture students Celeste Chargoy, Tyler Brawley, Chelsea Thompson, Nandani Patel, Litzy Suastigui, Flor Agundis, Liliana Vargas, Ethan Slate, and Felicity Garcia help assist with the organization and facilitation of the various speaking contests.

“Being a good communicator is one of the foundations off success towards personal and career development,” says Atwater FFA Advisor Kim Macintosh. “Our agriculture program is very proud of our students’ efforts, participation, courage, and enthusiasm in this event!”

For more information on the Atwater High School Agriculture Department and Atwater FFA, please log on the website www.AtwaterFFA.org .

Atwater FFA

Atwater High School Agriculture Department

Atwater FFA

PO Box 835  /  2201 Fruitland Ave

Atwater, CA  95301

Office:  209-357-6025

​Fax:  209-357-6067