By Sally Voth
Stonewall Jackson High School senior Whitney Bowman isn't sure what sort of future she wants in the agriculture industry, but she has yet to find something she doesn't like.
"I haven't really found a part of agriculture I don't like yet," the 18-year-old said. "I definitely have a heart for livestock."
Bowman's family raises Holstein steers on their farm in Mt. Jackson, and she is an FFA officer.
Bowman recently learned she'd won first prize in the Agricultural Council of America's high school essay contest. Its theme was "American Agriculture: Nourishing Opportunities."
Bowman planned to leave Monday night for Washington, D.C, where she, her parents and twin sister Brittany will attend the Celebration of Ag Dinner on Tuesday at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She also won $1,000, she said.
"I can't wait," Bowman said. "I've been counting down the hours."
In her essay, she writes that agriculture nurtures the environment, technology and relationships.
Bowman hasn't decided on a college yet or on a potential career.
"Something in agriculture," she said. "I haven't figured out yet, possibly teach agriculture, but I don't know."
According to the ACA's website, www.agday.org, Tuesday marks the 40th anniversary of National Ag Day.
Gov. Bob McDonnell has declared this week Virginia Agriculture Week and Virginia Agriculture Week.
Contact staff writer Sally Voth at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or firstname.lastname@example.org