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More than a dozen students visited Washington, D.C. at the of April as part of Woodbury FFAs floriculture and horticulture experience. (contributed)

More than a dozen students visited Washington, D.C. at the of April as part of Woodbury FFA’s floriculture and horticulture experience. (contributed)

Jason Suess, Ag/FFA Reporter

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Nonnewaug agriscience program has never been shy of providing real-world experience. The last week of April was no different as the floriculture and horticulture classes headed to Washington, D.C., to visit businesses and monuments. 

Some of the places they went were a wholesale florist operation, memorials and a golf course just to name a few.

“We learned about how the grass is maintained,” said Ryan Wicklund, a senior horticulture student. “We also learned what goes into a large golf course maintenance career.”

Some students saw this trip was essential because they missed their eighth-grade trips, others because they wanted to learn more about their respective fields. Either way, everyone wanted to learn more about floriculture and horticulture. 

“I didn’t get to go on my eighth-grade D.C. trip, so I saw this as another opportunity,” said Kyleigh Paige, a sophomore horticulture student. “It ended up being way better than I thought it would be. It was so amazing to not only see monuments but also parts of ag that I’m interested in.” 

Other students were drawn to this year’s trip because it would be a fun and educational experience with friends.

“I went on the trip because I was interested in all the places we would visit,” said Jillian Fitzgerald, a sophomore mechanics student. “Simply going on a fun school trip with friends.” 

Eric Birkenberger, a floriculture teacher, has been doing this trip since the 2000s. It alternates every year between Washington D.C. and Philadelphia. 

“It’s such a fun trip to spend time with your friends and see new places that you might not be able to see again,” said Paige. “Having the opportunity to really look into businesses like this is very rare, and it’s important if you are interested in the career.”