Dr. Maurice Eastridge, Dairy Extension Specialist, The Ohio State University
The seventh Annual Midwest Dairy Challenge, which ran February 9-11, 2011, attracted 68 students from 16 universities and colleges to the event hosted by the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.
This year’s contest was held in Menomonie, WI, and the temperature was -15oF on Thursday morning when the students visited the dairy farms. It drew students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Iowa State University, University of Minnesota, Michigan State University, University of Illinois, South Dakota State University, The Ohio State University, Kansas State University, University of Wisconsin-Platteville, Purdue University, University of Wisconsin-River Falls, Northeast Iowa Community College, UW Farm and Industry Short Course, Lakeshore Technical College, Chippewa Valley Technical College, and Northcentral Technical College.
The next day, the 16 teams of students were divided between two dairy farms located in the Menomonie area. All students are placed on aggregate teams. Students from The Ohio State University participating in the program were: Andrew Lefeld, Alissa Hunter, Melinda Miller, Stephanie Neal, and Teresa Smith. Their teams received either a gold or silver ranking. The judges chose two teams as platinum winners, the contest’s highest distinction. The individuals who comprised these teams are: Wesley Vanderstappen – Northeast Iowa Community College; Danielle Brown – UW-Madison; Ethan Ulness – UW Farm and Industry Short Course; Melissa Schmitt – Iowa State University; Karen Anderson – University of Minnesota; Heather Lammers – Lakeshore Technical College; Eric Sneller – Michigan State University; Scott Felten – UW Farm and Industry Short Course; and Joseph Ploeckelman – UW-River Falls.
The National contest will be held March 31 – April 2 in Hickory, NC and will be hosted by North Carolina State University. The following students will represent OSU at the contest: Andrew Lefeld, Alissa Hunter, Stephanie Neal, and Teresa Smith.
The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC; http://www.dairychallenge.org) was established as a management contest to incorporate all phases of a specific dairy business. It strives to incorporate a higher-learning atmosphere with practical application to help prepare students for dairy industry careers. Supported financially through generous donations by industry and coordinated by a volunteer board of directors, the first NAIDC was held in April 2002.