The contest provided an opportunity for Pennsylvania FFA Association chapters to make a positive impact in their community by enhancing independence and/or promoting success for farmers with disabilities.
Entry categories included three options:
- completing a service project
- developing an assistive technology tabletop demo, or
- creating a video presentation.
The Central Columbia FFA and Columbia-Montour AVTS FFA chapters will split $400 as they collaborated on a service project.
The Cumberland Valley FFA will win $400 for an assistive technology tabletop demo.
Awards will be presented during the 88th PA FFA State Convention & Activities Week, which is held at Penn State University from June 13-15, 2017. Students and their FFA chapters will be honored on June 14 at 7 p.m. during a General Session event at the Bryce Jordan Center.
Students from the Central Columbia FFA and Columbia-Montour AVTS FFA chapters worked collaboratively at the Eos Therapeutic Riding Center in Bloomsburg, Pa. The center provides therapeutic horseback riding lessons for mentally, physically, and emotionally challenged children and adults. The students worked over the course of a year to assist with facility needs, riding equipment needs, and rider needs.
A student with the Cumberland Valley FFA chapter developed a myoelectric prosthetic hand. This assistive technology developed out of an agriscience research project being conducted by a student with an interest in robotics and prosthetics. The student started by creating models of hands from drinking straws and emerged into creating a functional model out of lumber. The project evolved after a model of a hand was 3-D printed and programmed to operate from an electrical stimulus.
AgrAbility PA assists farmers and agricultural workers with disabilities or long-term health conditions by linking them with potential resources and by providing support they need to live independently and continue working in or return to production agriculture.
Information about next year's Bridging Horizons Contest will be available on September 1, 2017 at www.bridginghorizonspa.org.
AgrAbility for Pennsylvanians (AgrAbility PA) is a statewide partnership between Penn State Extension and UCP Central PA in support of a project funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Learn more about AgrAbility PA by visiting www.AgrAbilityPA.org, calling (814) 867-5288, emailing AgrAbility@psu.edu, or searching @AgrAbilityPA on social media.