Ruppert, Buysse reach lofty FFA status

By Per Peterson

Talk about select company.

Tracy Area High School graduates Cayden Buysse (Class of 2019) and Zachery Ruppert (Class of 2020) have been announced as National Proficiency Finalists by the National FFA. The young men are among only four chosen per area each year — that’s 0.000289% of the Minnesota FFA population.

Buysse and Ruppert will go through an interview process during the last week of October, with the winners being announced during the National FFA Convention, which will be held virtually this year.

“I am really excited to have been chosen as a national proficiency finalist in the Vegetable Production category,” Ruppert said. “I am proud to represent the Tracy Area FFA chapter at the national level. It has long been a goal of mine to make it this far with my proficiency. I hope to use what I have learned from my proficiency and apply it to my future career.”

Ruppert admitted he never thought his proficiency would be chosen as a national finalist.

“I am sure that there are many other deserving proficiency applicants,” he said. “I am honored that my proficiency application was chosen above many others.”

Ruppert’s proficiency area is Vegetable Production entrepreneurship/placement, which means that the student works for a business — or owns a business — that grows and sells all types of garden vegetables, which includes items such as potatoes, onions and sweet corn.

“I am in the entrepreneurship category, because I own and operate Ruppert Garden Produce,” he said.

See this week’s Headlight Herald for more on this article.