Shenandoah schools capture awards at FFA convention

Area school chapters of the National FFA Organization have announced honors achieved at the 89th State FFA Convention held in June at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.

The Strasburg High School FFA was recognized as a three-star chapter and earned a superior chapter award gold rating. As one of the top 18 in Virginia, Strasburg will be judged at the national level in October.

Signal Knob Middle School in Strasburg earned a superior chapter award gold rating and national chapter award gold rating, placing it among the top 10 percent of chapters in the Virginia Association. The chapter also earned the Top Middle School Chapter in the Northern Area and won the area’s community development award.

In Woodstock, Central High School’s chapter earned a gold superior rating as well as a national chapter award gold rating, public relations award gold rating and a 100 percent membership award. Central was ranked in the top 15 percent of Virginia chapters.

From the southern campus in Quicksburg, Peter Muhlenberg Middle School earned a superior chapter award gold rating and national chapter award gold rating, naming it among Virginia’s top 10 percent chapters. The chapter also earned student development award for the Northern Area.

Stonewall Jackson High School ranked in the top 10 percent and earned a public relations award gold rating.

The schools also celebrated the following results:


Devon Eyring, Nathan McDonald, Hannah Orndorff and Ashley Yanego placed second in the category of agricultural issues.

Austin Weaver placed first in extemporaneous public speaking and will compete at the national convention in October.

Devon Eyring, Ethan Gochenour, Bethany Gochenour and Ashley Yanego placed second as a team in the category of environmental and natural resources. Devon Eyring placed sixth individually and Bethany Gochenour seventh. The team will represent Virginia at Eastern State Exposition in September.

Nathan McDonald and Hannah Orndorff placed first in plant systems at the Agriscience Fair Competition. Tiffany Heishman came in first in power, structural and technical systems. Both groups will have the chance to compete at the national convention.

Carl Williams won the Proficiency Award for agricultural mechanics repair and maintenance, and Bethany Gochenour won for diversified agricultural production.

• Seven members received their state FFA degrees, and another will receive his American FFA Degree in October
• Public Relations Award gold rating
• Chapter scrapbook gold rating


The chapter’s four state stars went to John-Robert Helsley as the state star farmer, Nicole Kibler for a state star in placement, Elizabeth Rhodes for a state star in agribusiness and Emily Dysart for a state star in agriscience.

Emily Dysart, Lacey Dysart, John-Robert Helsley and Elizabeth Rhodes were state proficiency winners.

• Mykah Smith placed first in dairy handling and will compete at the national convention
• The livestock team placed second out of 44 teams and will compete at the Big E
• The crops team placed second out of 12 in the junior division and third out of 16 in the senior division
• The agricultural issues team placed third
• The poultry team placed fourth
• The agriculture mechanics team placed fifth out of 31 teams

Eight members earned their state FFA degrees, and the chapter also won the northern area chapter forestry and wildlife contest and the northern area star chapter.

Stonewall Jackson

Holly Sine earned an American FFA degree, and seven other members earned state FFA degrees.

Lizzie Funkhouser and twins Brittany and Whitney Bowman earned national FFA scholarships.

Peter Muhlenberg

Daniel Dellinger, Shane Dodson and Riley Haines earned blue ratings as the second place team in the agriscience mechanics technology contest.

Ben Wright, Jacob Coffey, Avery Mason and Walker Bowman came in third place in the food and fiber contest. Bowman earned a red rating and his teammates blue ratings.

Emma Lutz, Gracie Holzbauer and Jeremy Viar competed in the small animal care contest, Lutz earning a red rating and the others yellow ratings.

Blue ratings are given to students who score in the top third percentile, followed by red and then yellow.