A Great Year in FFA for Foreign Exchange Student, Pablo Barranco

At the 2015 Lorain County Fair, Mrs. Finnegan-Firelands FFA Advisor, recruited Pablo Barranco to join the Firelands FFA after meeting him with his host family. Barranco was hosted by the Chad and Amy Grude family of Wakeman.

Barranco hails from Seville, Spain. In Spain he enjoys spending time with family and friends and long-boarding. Upon his arrival, he immersed himself in American culture and schooling. In school he maintained a perfect 4.0 GPA and was involved in cross-country, track, and FFA.

In the FFA his accomplishments are numerous. He accomplished more in one year than many will accomplish in their four years in the program. He won an FFA jacket for being the first of his classmates to memorize the FFA Creed. He memorized the FFA Creed not in his native Castilian Spanish but in Puerto Rican Spanish; the official translation for the students from Puerto Rico. He learned the Creed in English as well so that he could answer questions about the Creed in English. He competed at the county public speaking contest where he won overall and moved on to the sub-district speaking contest at Plymouth High School. He won sub-district FFA speaking and district FFA speaking contest at Shelby High School where he qualified for Ohio FFA speaking contest. At the state contest in Marysville he wowed judges with his impressive speaking and knowledge of the Creed. He earned fifth in state for public speaking!

Barranco attended National FFA Convention in Louisville, Kentucky in October. During the school year he has logged over 200 hours of FFA activities like leadership activities, community service, and fund-raising. At the State FFA Convention in April he helped to pack meals at Ohio FFA Fights Hunger and he crossed the stage at convention to accept recognition on behalf of the chapter. He forged a strong relationship with Matthew Klopfenstein, the former Ohio FFA President. Klopfenstein invited Barranco on stage in front of nearly 10,000 people to help him deliver his retiring address.

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