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  MaKayla Craig,
Past President

SAE Project(s)
My love for raising animals began at a very young age. When I entered the fourth grade, I began raising show pigs to be raised, shown, and sold at the Culpeper Madison Rappahannock Farm Show. When I became an FFA Member, this became my Supervised Agricultural Experience. Each year my showmanship skills become more advanced, because I gained more knowledge and learned how to improve from one show to the next. Each year, I also learned how to raise better show pigs, whether it is changing the hogs feed rations to insure they are gaining the optimal amount of weight per day, or simply learning what feeding method works the best. The skills that I have learn from my SAE have also been beneficial in other aspect of my life. From learning basic business terminology, record keeping, or understanding the importance of hard work.

Favorite CDE or LDE
My favorite LDE was Prepared Public Speaking. From a young age, my passion for speaking in front of large groups of people developed. In this contest, you begin by choosing a topic related to agriculture, then you begin researching, and developing a speech. For this contest you must win the Federation and Area Competitions to be able to compete at the State level. This competition has helped me prepare for the real world, and has helped me develop research skills that I will be able to use in the future. One of the neatest things about the LDE is how applicable the skills and knowledge you develop are to the real world. ?

Favorite FFA memory
My favorite FFA memory is when I put the iconic blue corduroy jacket for the first time. One of my advisors asked me to compete in the Prepared Public Speaking contest, at first I was resentful, but I told him I would do it. As I walked into the storage closet, grabbed a random jacket, I was not quite sure exactly what I was doing. I slipped my arms into the sleeves, zipped the jacket up, and tucked in the tallywacker, I noticed something; the jacket fit me perfectly. From that moment on, I knew that FFA was where I was meant to be. That moment will stick with me forever, because if I never decided to step foot into that storage closet, my life would be very different.

Future Plans
In the fall I will be attending Lord Fairfax Community College to finish up my associates degree. This will allow me to travel for the next year and experience the world around me even more! After that, I will transfer to a four year university and pursue a degree in Marketing and Journalism. I hope to work as a Broadcast Journalist. Throughout my life and career, I will be an advocate of Agriculture, Agriculture Education, and FFA.
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