On May 5, 2023, the California FFA State Finals took place at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, with nearly 50 Santa Maria FAA members competing in various categories.
According to the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District, the Santa Maria FFA has three State Champion Judging Teams in Career Development Events this school year.
The Santa Maria FFA Vegetable Crop Judging Team won the State Champion first place title with Second High Individual Erick Silva and Fourth High Individual Carolina Espinoza.
Other team members included Emily Guzman and Kayce Van Horn.
"I have been on the Vegetable Judging Team for two years now and learned so much about vegetable judging but also learned so many life skills. Being on this team with all the fabulous people has been amazing and such an honor. Through the ups and downs, we supported each other and we’re about to make lifelong memories," said Kayce Van Horn, a sophomore at Santa Maria High School.
The Poultry Judging Team also took home the State Champion first place title and they will advance to the National Contest and represent California FFA in late October in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The Milk Quality & Dairy Products Team had the State Champion First High Individual Evelyn Noriega and the team placed in third.
Prior to this, last month at Fresno State, the Fruit Tree Judging Team, which is coached by Michael Guerra, took home the State Champion 1st place title with First High Individual Jessica Avendano and Third High Individual Evelyn Navarette.
The National FFA says that the Career Development Events (CDE) challenge students to develop critical thinking skills and effective decision-making skills, foster teamwork and promote communication while recognizing the value of ethical competition and individual achievement.
The CDE events occur at the local, state, and national levels.
For more information on about the Agricultural FAA, click here.