Tractor Restoration Project Promotes Personal Growth
By Andrew Walker
Friday morning, six lucky winners were able to take home cash prize awards as winners
of the 2008 Chevron Delo Tractor Restoration Competition. The awards banquet was
held in the Hyatt, in downtown Indianapolis at 10:00 am.
For two days, competitors went through rigorous interviews on the development of
their tractor restoration project. Both the individual and group contestants were
graded on the restoration of a tractor, the overall outcome, recordkeeping and a
presentation followed by safety question.
The first prize for both areas was $2,500. Second place received 1,500 and the third
place winners were awarded $1,000.
The award winner for the individual competition was Matthew Dehlinger of the Olney
FFA Chapter in Illinois, with his1936 John Deere A. The first runner-up was Ishley
Elmore of the Decatur FFA Chapter in Texas her 1950 Farmall H. The third place recipient
was Jordan Raska of the Brazos FFA Chapter in Texas. The restored tractor was a
1959 John Deere 830.
In the group award area, the top honors went to the Eufaula FFA Chapter of Alabama
with their 1946 Case DC. First runner-up was the Cotton Center FFA Chapter of Texas
with their T1961 John Deere 3010. The third place recipient was the Northwood FFA
Chapter of Indiana with a 1967 John Deere 3020 Gas.
The Eufaula FFA Chapter was very excited to receive the grand prize of $2,500.
"It was exciting when we heard the word 'Case,' because no one else did a Case tractor,"
said Andrea Pittman of Eufaula FFA.
They are thinking about using the award to possibly restore another tractor next
year. The group said that it was a great experience.
"I never had touched a tractor before," said Katie Walden.
The restoration process encourages teamwork in a hands-on setting and allows students
to develop specialized skills. In addition, it preserves the history of agriculture
that has helped FFA thrive throughout the years.
The Chevron Delo Tractor Restoration project has taken place since 1995, helping
members to create a project and accomplish their goals. Chevron, the sponsor, also
had a booth at the convention career show.
The National FFA Organization, formerly known as the Future Farmers of America,
is a national youth organization of 507,763 student members – all preparing for
leadership and careers in the science, business and technology of agriculture –
as part of 7,439 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin
Islands. The National FFA Organization changed to its present name in 1988, in recognition
of the growth and diversity of agriculture and agricultural education. The FFA mission
is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential
for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural
education. Visit www.ffa.org for more information.
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