TOP PHOTO: Alco Builders & Realty made a $500 donation to the CCHS agricultural department to fund Senior R.J. Moore’s FFA project. Pictured left to right are Agriculture teacher Nathaniel Morton, CCHS Assistant principal Brad Collette, Tracy Lobertini with Alco Builders & Realty, R.J. Moore, Anita Kettlehake and CCHS Principal Ben Foust
By Charlotte Underwood
JACKSBORO, TN (WLAF) – A Campbell County High FFA student’s senior project is being brought to life thanks to a donation from Alco Builders & Realty.
For his senior FFA project, Robert “R.J.” Moore designed a water conservation system for the high school to use in its greenhouses and for watering the FFA animals. His “ingenious design” will conserve water by recycling rain water and will save the school money.
The 18-year-old Moore came up with the design and wrote the proposal for the project. It consists of a series of gutters, collection containers and hoses to distribute the water.
“RJ was born to be a member of FFA; he’s an amazing young man, and it’s so cool to see an 18 year old come up with something like this,” CCHS Career and Technical Education Coach Josh Parker stated.
Moore said he was inspired to do the project to “complete his senior FFA project, conserve water and save the school money.”
He then went a step further and got price quotes on materials for the project and gave them to his agricultural teachers and to assistant principal Brad Collette, who is over the Career and Technical Education (CTE) part of the school.
Collette then took Moore’s idea to Tracy Lobertini with Alco Builders & Realty who decided to fund the project.
Lobertini came to the school on Friday to present the check to Moore, who had no idea his project proposal was going to be funded. His grandmother who raised him, Anita Kettlehake, was also contacted and came to the school to be part of the surprise. The check was presented to Moore in Nathaniel Morton’s Agriculture classroom.
Moore designed the project about a month ago, but he had been talking about it since June, according to Morton.
When Assistant Principal Collette approached Tracy Lobertini with Alco Builders & Reallty about funding the project, she said she didn’t even have to think twice about it. She knew she wanted to “do it in honor of her father.”
“My dad Ken Hicks was a farmer and teacher here at the school, and he taught in the vocational department. He’s now deceased, but this would speak to him; he would approve wholeheartedly. I wanted to do it in his honor,” Lobertini said.
She is a 1985 graduate of CCHS and also wanted to give back to her local school and community.
“Being in business, I know the CTE program is a critical part of our education system, and I want to support and encourage these students,” Lobertini said.
Moore’s grandmother Anita Kettlehake said “it was amazing that he had thought up the idea on his own and wanted to help the school save water.”
“I’m just super proud of him,” Kettlehake said.
After the check presentation, assistant principal Collette also announced RJ as the CTE “Student of the Month for September.” Collette said he was proud of RJ.
Campbell County High School Principal Ben Foust attended the check presentation as well.
“We’re excited we have students who take the initiative to make the school better. We’re super proud of RJ and the young man he has become,” Foust said. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 10/02/2023-6AM)