Here, Justin shares his thoughts on CTAE, owning a business while still in high school, and working beyond your comfort zone.
Educating Georgia’s Future: Tell us about your experience in Georgia’s public schools. What aspects of your education have you enjoyed most? What has been most challenging?
My experience in Georgia public schools has definitely been most rewarding by offering me the opportunity to explore not just academics but also my passion in agriculture education. I have thoroughly enjoyed being able to cross-reference everything I have learned academically with applications I have been able to put into practice in my CTAE courses. I am proud to be able to show the need for continued support in the CTAE area of our education system and that you can certainly be an Advanced Placement/Honors student while completing a technical pathway.
The most challenging aspect of my educational experience is time constraints. As with anything in life, we are limited to just so many hours in a day to get it all done. I feel sometimes that I have over-committed, but that soon passes as I push through by using better time management practices and see the rewards of my accomplishments at the end.
Which class or subject has been your favorite?
The class I have enjoyed most is my agribusiness management and leadership course. I feel this type of course should be taken by every student at some point in their high school career because it deals with so many aspects of the real world after high school. From preparing a resume for a job or college, to financial management, to confidence building in interviews, and public speaking, this course lays the groundwork for success.
Tell us about your involvement in CTAE courses. How has CTAE coursework benefited you?
In sixth grade I was introduced to the world of agriculture education by a great teacher, Mr. Josh Allen. From that moment I knew that this was the future my life would hold. Since that time, I have taken the following courses; basic agriculture, animal science technology/biotechnology, agribusiness management and leadership, general horticulture and plant science, wildlife management, and I am currently taking agriculture mechanics at Athens Technical College. The experiences I have had in each of these courses have benefited me in more ways than I can explain. At the top of the list would be the benefits of starting and running my business, crossing my agriscience fair project over to other state, national, and international science fairs that I have competed in, and now being able to student teach agriculture education at the same middle school that I started this endeavor.
What do you hope to do after graduating high school – and how has your education prepared you for that next step?
I hope that upon graduation I will be entering the University of Georgia as a sophomore thanks to the Move on When Ready program. My intent is to dual major in Agriculture Education and Agriculture Engineering in hopes to land a job in Georgia as an agriculture education teacher. My education has prepared me for the future by allowing me the chance to explore both academics and CTAE opportunities.
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