Return to Headlines

Plant, Animal, and Life Sciences Students Place in FFA Competition

Students in the Plant, Animal, and Life Sciences (PALS) program at Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES put their skills to the test at the New York State FFA Virtual Convention.

The PALS program had three students place within the top 10 of their respective competitions at this year’s convention. Juniors Bella Haynes and Caitlyn Casler placed fifth and sixth, respectively, in the Floriculture Career Development event. And junior Zachary Denman placed sixth in the Vet Science Career Development event.

“One of the main portions of the vet science competition was telemedicine. It was all about talking on the phone and communicating with patients and technicians and trying to come up with a diagnosis and treatment plan,” said Denman.

Haynes said the floral competition consisted of identifying flowers and answering questions specific to flowers, as well as a team event. For the team event, students were tasked with creating a business that made a profit.

“We had to research what soil to use, what seeds to use, and when to plant them, all on a limited budget. But this part was the most fun to me. I like team events, so it was more about participating with each other than individually,” said Haynes.

“I’m extremely proud of how hard the students worked, despite all the challenges of adapting to a virtual contest due to COVID-19. The students were able to adapt to the new setting and thrived in the Vet Science and Floriculture Career Development Events,” said PALS teacher Katie Hopkins.

The Plant, Animal, and Life Sciences program provides students the chance to learn about several areas, including the care and handling of animals, veterinarian medicine, floriculture or florist work, and managing a business.


Photo: Bella Haynes and Zachary Denman. Not pictured: Caitlyn Casler