Name: Ashley Thurston
As a freshman at Suffield High School in the agriscience program and a member of the Suffield Regional FFA, which supports agricultural education, Ashley Thurston is challenging herself and meeting those challenges.
Accomplishment: Ashley recited the five-paragraph FFA Creed, a statement of beliefs, in front of her fellow freshmen on Tuesday, March 1. Ashley scored well enough to move on to the upcoming district competition. Her ultimate goal is to compete in the state competition and advance to the national level.
Prior to this year, Ashley had not done any public speaking but when the opportunity to compete came up with FFA, she turned to some advice she had received from Laura LaFlamme, the FFA advisor.
“Mrs. LaFlamme always tells us we have to step out of our comfort zone," Ashley said. "I was never really a talkative person until this year. I started just living in the moment. I thought it was a good challenge to overcome speaking in front of people.”
Overall, Ashley is enjoying her experience at Suffield High School.
“I’ve made so many friends,” she said.
Ashley has been riding horses for about seven years. She has four horses and has competed in both Massachusetts and Connecticut. She aspires to compete in New York this summer.
“I’ve always wanted to be a veterinarian, so I decided what better way than to be involved in a program where I can work with animals," Ashley said. “...I’m able to really use my vet skills.”
Like most teenagers, she enjoys most sports and hanging out with her friends. When she’s not caring for her horses, she likes to watch Animal Planet or ESPN.
“Criminal Minds is pretty intense," she said. "I like the mystery.”