Dr. Maurice Eastridge, Extension Dairy Specialist, The Ohio State University
The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (http://www.dairychallenge.org) is a national contest created to inspire students and enhance university programs nationwide. It is a dairy management contest that incorporates all phases of a specific dairy business in a fun, interactive, and educational forum and is supported financially through generous donations by industry and coordinated by a volunteer steering committee. The fifth annual National Contest was held on March 31 and April1, 2006 in Twin Falls, ID and was hosted by the University of Idaho and Washington State University. The event attracted 27 teams from the United States and Canada, challenging them to put their textbook and practical knowledge to the ultimate test - analyzing dairy farms. The format started with a walk-through at the dairy farms, followed by the opportunity to ask questions of the owners, and analyze farm-specific data. Student teams used this information to develop management recommendations, and then presented their management recommendations to a panel of five dairy industry judges. The placement categories for the contest are platinum, gold, and silver, with the team from The Ohio State University doing an excellent job by placing in the gold category. The students that represented Ohio at the 2006 National Contest were Michael Klein, Stacey Moritz, Dan Sanders, and Amanda Todd, with Dr. Maurice Eastridge serving as their coach. The farm evaluated by Ohio's team consisted of 2700 Holstein cows, double-29 and double-20 parallel parlors, milked 3-times-a-day, and the rolling herd average for milk was 25,636 lb. Other large farms and a calf ranch were visited during the program. In 2008, the National Contest will be held March 30-31in Sioux Falls, SD. Iowa State University and South Dakota State University will be co-hosting the event.
The team that represented Ohio and placed in the gold
category at the 2006 National Dairy Challenge were:
Front row: Amanda Todd and Stacey Moritz; Back row:
Dan Sanders, Dr. Maurice Eastridge (Coach), and Michael Klein.