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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU floral team places in national competition

Eight students from New Mexico State University put their floriculture skills to the test in a national floral judging and design competition April 6-7 at Utah State University in Logan, Utah.

Libby Leask and Victoria Arroyave judge floral commodities in preparation for the national floriculture competition held April 6 and 7 in Logan, Utah. (NMSU photo by F.J. Gaylor photography)

The group of students heading to the competition was selected from Sabine Green's advanced floral design and evaluation class. Students in the class come from colleges all across the university and are studying a wide variety of subjects, said Green.

Devonna Tercero, a senior studying finance, said she found the class in the course schedule and decided to sign up for it. "I thought it sounded like fun," said Tercero. "Floral design is definitely something I would like to continue after this, as a hobby or as something serious. It's also a lot more complicated than people think."

Victoria Arroyave is a senior studying art and said she was introduced to the class through a friend. "It's only once a week and it's a lot of fun. I am always getting to take free flowers home, which is a plus," said Arroyave.

The group is a class, club and team, Green said. They meet once a week in a brightly lit room and practice design with a variety of colorful flowers. Students are selected to go to the national competition based on the amount of time spent fundraising and doing community service.

They also sell flowers in Gerald Thomas Hall at NMSU on a weekly basis to raise money to send them to competition.

The national competition is divided into two different categories - design and evaluation.

Students that competed in the design category had no idea what kind of flowers they had to work with until they got there. "It's kind of like doing an impromptu speech with flowers," Green said. Monica Gomez and Jessica Lucero both placed second in their design categories. Jaclyn Simon and Devonna Tercero each finished third.

Students that competed in the evaluation category graded the quality of fresh floral commodities based on industry standards. Results for this part of the competition aren't available yet.

Any NMSU student can get involved in floral design and judging by signing up for the beginning floral design class (Horticulture 240) that will be offered in the fall.