Over 300 Virgin Valley High School (VVHS) students turned out for the first Career and Technical Education and Arts Night on April 28. The event, which organizers hope will become an annual affair, displayed the talents of students in several areas including woodworking, art, Future Farmers of America (FFA) displays, gardening and even cooking.
Sophomore Nathan Cannon proudly displayed the 1978 MGB that he recently purchased and is restoring. “I bought it for $1,300 and now my challenge is to fix it up,” said Cannon. Asked if he was working on it in shop class Cannon said he planned to “but first I have to get it running so I don’t have to tow it every day to school.”
Another exhibit featured a veterinary science display by Shaina Buccicardi and Franqui Contreras. Buccicardi, who is a junior, is also volunteering part-time with Mesquite Veterinary Clinic to “learn the trade.” Buccicardi also had goats on display that she keeps at her teacher’s house. Both Contreras and Buccicardi are working to organize a four-person team for the state FFA competition next year and hoping to win a scholarship to veterinary school. There are currently over 130 students in the FFA program at VVHS.
Food served included chicken-on-a-stick and grilled cheese sandwiches. All the proceeds from food sales go towards paying for advertising and marketing next year’s event. Funds from the sale of student-made projects go to the student.
One unusual demonstration was by seniors Omar Flores and Samuel Meiendrez. Their “exhibit” on behalf of the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) chapter at VVHS consisted of greeting attendees, shaking hands and introducing themselves to learn social and business skills. Instructor Ed Ponce heads the program, which nationally has over 750,000 students participating. The program is new to VVHS and Ponce hopes to have the school’s efforts recognized in the next few weeks by the state JAG chapter.
Other exhibits included students’ art works and woodworking projects. Perhaps the most unusual woodworking piece was a “Wormy Maple Night Stand” entered by Jace Haviland. The stand won a first place ribbon, and creatively included auto pistons for legs.
Teachers who helped make the event a success included Mr. Ludvigson (event organization), Mr. Hughes (auto shop), Mr. Felix (woodworking), Mr. Ponce (JAG), Mrs. Benell (FFA) and Mr.Putnam (art).