Marathon FFA Members Receive Grants (Photos)

(Press Release from Marathon Central School District High School Principal Holly Marcolina)

The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Three Marathon Jr-Sr High School students’ lives have been recently impacted by the generosity of national organizations who sponsored the FFA Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) grants.

Brooklin Drake, Dominic Forrest, and Brycen Aukema have each been awarded a $1,000 SAE grant. These grants are designed to help create or expand Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) projects, a requirement that all FFA members must complete. An SAE requires FFA members to create and operate an agriculture related business, work at an agriculture related business or conduct an agricultural research experience. Upon completion, FFA members must submit a comprehensive report regarding their career development experience. The three winners from Marathon were selected from among 5,968 applications nationwide!

Brooklin Drake (12th grade) received a $1,000 Bob Evans Restaurant grant that she will use for plant production. She will be growing flowers in her greenhouse (including fresh cut sunflowers throughout the summer) and plans to plant pumpkins and vegetables to sell in the fall. Brooklin says, “Being awarded this grant means so much to me, as I will now be able to start planning for my future business!”

Dominic Forrest (11th grade) received a $1,000 Amerisource Bergen Foundation grant that he will use to purchase a cart and harnesses for his family's two miniature donkeys, Jose and Jenna. After he gets the materials and trains the donkeys, the community will be able to see Jose and Jenna at local events.

Brycen Aukema (7th grade) received a $1,000 Domino's grant. His passion is raising sheep and he plans on using his SAE to purchase gates, halters, and a show bow for his animals.

The National FFA Organization is a school based national youth leadership development organization of more than 760,000 student members as part of 8,700 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Marathon’s FFA chapter advisor is Mrs. Crystal Aukema.

"I am tremendously proud of these students.  Having three national winners from our school is a testimony to our students' dedication to agriculture and our high-quality agricultural education program, led by Mrs. Crystal Aukema.  We are grateful to live in a community that supports our student leaders", said Marathon High School Principal Holly Marcolina.

For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at and on Facebook and Twitter.



Brycen Aukema (7th grade) - Photo received from the Marathon CSD



Brooklin Drake (12th grade) - Photo received from the Marathon CSD




Forrest Donkeys - Photo received from the Marathon CSD