Career Development Event 2010

We had our Hillsborough County Nursery, Landscape & Floriculture Career Development Event yesterday. Nearly one hundred students and their sponsors from around Hillsborough County descended upon the Extension office for a grueling half day of testing related to the nursery, landscape, and floriculture industry. All students belonged to their respective high school or middle school’s Future Farmers of America Chapter and have been preparing for this test with their teachers for the last few months. The students were tested on identification skills with landscape and floriculture plants, insects, weeds, and disease pests, and industry related tools. They were also tested on their book knowledge on materials related to the production of plants, and the installation of Florida Friendly Landscapes. This is also a practice run for the state and national championships for similar FFA events. Multiple volunteers and staff noted how well mannered and behaved the students were during the event. The students really did a great job on their tests showing off how much they worked up to this event.

This extension agent sponsors the event with designing the tests, scoring and procuring all the materials as well as helping to provide lunch to the students, sponsors, and volunteers. There is also a great deal of industry supporters during the event, which was welcomed from ProSource One providing the drinks for the event, Tampa Bay Wholesale Grower members J and R Nursery, Riverview Flower Farm, and Tampa Wholesale Nursery providing the plants for identification. The food was provided from Holmberg Farms and Pam Walden from Hillsborough County schools. We also received help from volunteers of 4-H, and Hillsborough County Extension Staff. The awards and trophies are supplied from the Tampa Chapter FNGLA. The money that they buy awards with is from the Fall Plant Auction held during the Hillsborough County Fair. They will supply trophies and plaques for the overall school winners in a Jr. and Sr. division. They will also award checks and certificates to the highest individuals overall and for individual test winners.

I will be placing all the winners on my web page as well as a short video segment of the days’ event. Thank you all who helped and donated time, talent, and treasure to making this event flow so smoothly. Here is the link to my webpage: http://hillsborough.extension.ufl.edu/Ag/AgOrnProd/YouthCDE.html

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