The road to becoming a star is a lengthy and grueling process. Just like the stars in the sky, each star in FFA shines in a different way. Whether a Star in Production or a Star in Agribusiness, or even getting your Lone Star Degree, FFA members may face many obstacles to reach the stage at convention.
Starting at the chapter level you choose an area that you are proficient in. With the help of record books, turn in the application to at District to be approved on, then on to Area and State to be able to achieve your Lone Star Degree.
Falls City FFA member Katy Wiatrek received her Lone Star Degree at last year’s convention.
"Everything from activities in FFA and community service is what you must have. When all of that adds up, it amounts to what you have going for you to receive your Lone Star,” Wiatrek said.
At state convention, each Area is represented by one person as their best to offer in a certain field. Whether a Greenhand, Chapter, Lone Star or American Degree recipient, individuals have the chance to be considered the best. The variety of unique fields can be of interest in almost anyone in FFA from agriscience to agricultural communications.
However, some fields are tougher than others. Alea Carrell, from the Anderson-Shiro FFA Chapter, is the Area III Lone Star Degree Star in Agribusiness. “I feel proud to represent the largest area association in the state,” Carrell said. With Area III having more than 16,000 members, it is a rigorous process just to be a state finalist. “It’s not just something that you do. It’s something you have to think about and budget,” said Carrell.
Chairman of Degree Check Jerome Tymrak explained the process of reaching state with Star and Proficiency awards. “At the state level, 10 ag teachers on a committee score the applicants by a rubric provided by the National FFA,” Tymrak said. In the proficiency field, each candidate’s application is scored and verified by three agricultural teachers.
The applicants that win at state receive a $1,000 Dina Wallrath Robertson Memorial Scholarship, and the Proficiency Award winners receive a plaque sponsored by Superior Trophies and also $1,000.
Approximately $60,000 dollars were awarded to deserving students during stars night.