WSU student represents Washington agriculture at national FFA competition

By Sarah Appel, CAHNRS Academic Programs

“Push yourself to try and make it to nationals and get to wear your FFA jacket one more time. Because the memories I have made in that jacket have been great and I wouldn’t trade them for anything.”

Arroyo-Mejia stands on a stage in an FFA jacket holding a plaque with another woman.
Aranza Arroyo-Mejia, left, receiving an award for her FFA efforts.

That’s the advice freshman WSU student, Aranza Arroyo-Mejia, has for every high school senior participating in FFA this year. She gets to wear her FFA jacket one more time, representing Washington in the Environmental and Natural Resources (ENR) Career Development Event (CDE) at the National FFA Convention this week.

Aranza is a Fruit and Vegetable Management student but looks back at FFA with fond memories. She is excited to have the opportunity to compete one more time with her teammates for ENR at the national level.

She started participating in FFA as a freshman at Cashmere High School. Over the next four years, she competed in public speaking, meat judging, livestock judging, apple judging, and ENR – to name a few. She fell in love with the organization and participated in all four years.

Aranza is in Indianapolis, Indiana, representing Washington State with three team members as they compete in the Environmental and Natural Resources CDE. Over the next few days, the team will be put to the test as they demonstrate their skills related to wildlife conservation, soil science, GPS navigation, and water management. They will go through a 50 question knowledge test and give an oral presentation.

“Overall, I think we all live on the same planet, and we all need to grow food and maintain a sustainable environment,” she said.

All this, on behalf of Washington State FFA.

“It feels awesome, especially being from a small town of 3,500 people, and going to Indianapolis means a lot,” she said. “I’m proud of myself and my town and Washington State”

Aranza is grateful for all the skills that FFA taught her and encourages others to get involved as much as they can.