San Benito FFA Veterans Memorial Academy freshmen recently attended the Area X FFA Leadership Greenhand Camp in Mercedes to learn various leadership skills and participate in teambuilding and decision-making activities.
Greenhand, as the term describes, is a name given to a first-year student in the FFA Organization. The FFA serves as a foundation to building future leaders in the agriculture industry and within local communities.
Eddie Garcia, Agriculture Education teacher, said that attending the leadership camp served as a first step and an eye-opener for the students.
“Overall, it is evident that we are building future leaders within the San Benito CISD,” Garcia said. “I believe that by taking a positive approach with our students, emphasizing what a student is doing right before explaining what needs to be done better or needs improvement is key in getting students to perform not just at their best – but beyond their capabilities.”
After the opening ceremonies, San Benito FFA students sharpened their leadership skills and learned the true meaning of teamwork, trust and how to break out of their comfort zones, Garcia explained.
The students attended workshops that allowed them to build dedication, time management, and decision-making skills. They also had an opportunity to meet other FFA students from throughout the Valley and discuss leadership development.
The camp helped students learn the importance of giving back to their community and help them understand the true meaning of becoming productive members of society, Garcia added.
“As an FFA advisor, I can say that FFA provides a great opportunity for community involvement, leadership development and personal growth,” Garcia said.
Garcia stated that the networking and new friendships help youth connect with a world bigger than they could ever imagine.
Participating students returned with a different perspective, he added.
“As we ventured back to school later that afternoon, we discussed the focus of the camp,” he said. “By far the repetitive answer from all students was that in order to be a good leader, one has to have a passion. We discussed how one’s passion in life is doing what you like to do and doing something that makes you feel amazing and puts a smile on your face.”
For more information on the district’s FFA Programs, please call the district’s Career Technical Education Office (956) 361-6574.