When Kira Gardner’s friend suggested she join FFA (Future Farmer’s of America) at Viewpoint Middle School, the ninth grader was skeptical, but game. “I thought FFA was just for cowboys and kids who grew up on farms,” she remembered. “I was surprised how much fun it is. I never thought I would enjoy it so much.”
Kira Gardner recently won a $500 grant from the Utah FFA to start a floral business and it all started with a suggestion from her floral design teacher Nicole Hopkins.
“I’ve always loved getting flowers after a dance recital. I would keep them alive for as long as I could,” Kira said. She found herself looking forward to floral design class and working with flowers. Miss Hopkins encouraged Kira and suggested she join the floriculture team in FFA.
“I thought, ‘What if I’m good at this?’ I’m always up for trying something new,” said Kira. In 2021 she was the youngest participant in the Miss Lehi’s Outstanding Teen competition. “I stood in front of judges and answered questions! Now that I’ve done that, I’m not scared to try new experiences.”
When Kira proposed starting a floral business, Miss Hopkins told her about the FFA grant. Kira had to write an essay, put together a financial plan and goals and meet all the required deadlines. Weeks later Kira and Miss Hopkins found out she’d won the $500 grant for her floral business.
“I’ll use the greenhouse at Skyridge and the money will go toward supplies,” said Kira. She hopes to start her own cut flower garden and make corsages and boutonnieres for school dances. Once a month she’ll donate a floral arrangement to Primary Children’s Hospital. “I want to brighten someone’s day – flowers are the perfect way to do that.”