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Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge

2018

Dairy Challenge 2018

Left to right: Melissa Schmitt (Coach), Kelli Berger, Caleb Blaisdell, Audrey Souza, Olivia Bartel, not pictured: Chelsea Schossow (Assistant Coach)

outh Dakota State University participated in the 17th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge® (NAIDC) held April 12-14 in Visalia, CA. In total, 235 students from 38 colleges across the U.S. and Canada attended this educational event.  The SDSU team consisted of Olivia Bartel, Kelli Berger, Caleb Blaisdell, and Audrey Souza. Melissa Schmitt was coach and Chelsea Schossow and Jacob Weg served as assistant coaches.

Collegiate participants visited six dairy farms in California, as part of their training to help farmers evaluate and adapt management to optimize success and animal care. Also, industry professionals presented cutting-edge research, new programs and career opportunities to students.

Each contest team received information from an area dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of the dairy, students interviewed the herd owners. Each team developed a farm analysis and recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management.

The event culminated with team members presenting recommendations and then fielding questions from a panel of judges. These official judges included dairy producers and industry experts in dairy finances, reproduction, nutrition and animal health. Presentations were evaluated for accuracy of analysis and recommendations, with awards presented at a final banquet.

The Dairy Challenge Academy was developed in 2013 to expand this educational and networking event to more college students. Academy student-participants also analyzed and developed recommendations for an operating dairy; however, the Academy was organized in mixed-university teams with two Advisors to help coach these younger students.  Academy participants from South Dakota State University included Abigail Hopp and Alexandra Preszler.

2017

Dairy Challenge 2017

Left to right: Melissa Schmitt (Coach), Cord Cnossen, Chelsea Schossow, Megan Schaefer, Jacob Weg, Johan Osorio (Coach)

South Dakota State University participated in the 16th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge® (NAIDC) held March 30-April 1 in Visalia, CA. In total, 230 students from 37 colleges across the U.S. and Canada attended this educational event. These students are training for careers in the dairy industry as farmers, researchers, educators, financial analysts, nutritionists, farm service providers and veterinarians. The team members were Cord Cnossen, Megan Schaefer, Chelsea Schossow, and Jacob Weg. The team is coached by Melissa Schmitt and Johan Osorio with assistant coaches Brandon Hawkins and Brianna Lee.

Dairy Challenge® is an innovative three-day competition for students representing dairy science programs at North American universities. It enables students to apply theory and learning to a real-world dairy, while working as part of a four-person team. In its 16-year history, Dairy Challenge has helped train more than 5,000 students through the national contest, Dairy Challenge Academy and four regional contests conducted annually.

Collegiate participants visited seven dairy farms in California, as part of their training to help farmers evaluate and adapt management to optimize success and animal care. Also, industry professionals presented cutting-edge research, new programs and career opportunities to students. 

Each contest team received information from an area dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of the dairy, students interviewed the herd owners. Each team developed a farm analysis and recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management.

The event culminated with team members presenting recommendations and then fielding questions from a panel of judges. These official judges included dairy producers and industry experts in dairy finances, reproduction, nutrition and animal health. Presentations were evaluated for accuracy of analysis and recommendations, with awards presented at a final banquet.

The Dairy Challenge Academy was developed in 2013 to expand this educational and networking event to more college students. Academy student-participants also analyzed and developed recommendations for operating dairies; however, the Academy was organized in mixed-university teams with two Advisors to help coach these younger students. Representing South Dakota State University was Olivia Bartel and Audrey Souza.

North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge was established as a management contest to incorporate all phases of a specific dairy business. Its mission is to develop tomorrow’s dairy leaders and enhance progress of the dairy industry, by providing education, communication and networking among students, producers, and agribusiness and university personnel. NAIDC is supported completely through generous donations by more than 130 agribusinesses and dairy producers, and programs are coordinated by a volunteer board of directors.

2016

Dairy Challenge 2015

Left to right: Brandon Hawkins, Brianna Lee, Maggie Stiles, Bernice Vander Wal, Melissa Schmitt (Coach)

The South Dakota State University Dairy Challenge Team earned a fourth place award at the 15th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) competition held April 7-9, 2016 in Syracuse, New York. Thirty two teams representing different colleges from across the U.S. and Canada participated at this event hosted by the Northeast Region. The team, composed of Brandon Hawkins, Brianna Lee, Maggie Stiles, and Bernice Vander Wal were among the eight teams on their farm, with four farms total for the contest. The team was coached by Melissa Schmitt, Dr. David Casper, and Carl Kass. Each team received information from an area dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of the dairy, teams interviewed the herd owners and then developed a detailed farm analysis and recommendations for all areas of the farm including nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. The event culminated with team members presenting recommendations and then fielding questions from a panel of judges. These official judges included dairy producers and industry experts in dairy finances, reproduction, nutrition and animal health. Presentations were evaluated for accuracy of analysis and recommendations, with awards presented at a final banquet.

The Dairy Challenge Academy was developed in 2013 to expand this educational and networking event to more college students. Academy student-participants also analyzed and developed recommendations for operating dairies; however, the Academy was organized in mixed-university teams with two Advisors to help coach these younger students. Academy participants from South Dakota State University included Megan Schaefer and Chelsea Schossow. 

The Midwest Regional Contest was held February 10-12 in Platteville, Wisconsin being hosted by University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Students are placed on aggregate or mixed teams with students from other universities with varying backgrounds. The contest is structed like the national contest however the emphasis is more on education than the competition. Representing South Dakota State University included Brandon Hawkins, Brianna Lee, Chelsea Schossow, and Maggie Stiles. 

2015

Dairy Challenge 2015

Left to right: David Casper (Coach), Emily Martin, Benjamin Choudek, Sara Sontag, Riley Pitman, Melissa Schmitt (Assistant Coach)

The Dairy Challenge Team earned a second place award at the 13th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge® that was held in Ft.Wayne, Indiana. In total, 264 students from 37 colleges across the U.S. and Canada attended this educational event co-hosted by Purdue University, Michigan State University and The Ohio State University. The team, composed of David Berning, Matt Holdvogt, Chelsey Johnson and Holly Schmitt, ranked second from a field of eight teams, which evaluated the same operating dairy in the tri-state area. The team was coached by Kenneth Kalscheur, David Casper and Melissa Schmitt. In addition, a number of industry professionals assisted with practices to help prepare the team. For the contest, participants visited six dairy farms in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio, as part of their train-ing to help farmers evaluate and adapt management to optimize success and animal care. Also, industry professionals presented cutting-edge research, new programs and career opportunities to students. Academy participants from SDSU included Jennifer Casperson, Sam Fuchs, Emily Martin, Riley Pitman and Sara Sontag.

2014

Dairy Challenge 2014

Left to right: Kenneth Kalscheur (coach), Chelsey Johnson, Matthew Holdvogt, Holly Schmitt, and David Berning.

South Dakota State University earned a Second Place Award at the 13th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge® (NAIDC) held April 3-5 in Fort Wayne, Ind. In total, 264 students from 37 colleges across the U.S. and Canada attended this educational event co-hosted by Purdue University, Michigan State University and The Ohio State University. These students are training for careers in the dairy industry as farmers, researchers, educators, financial analysts, nutritionists, farm service providers and veterinarians. The team composed of four SDSU seniors, David Berning, Matt Holdvogt, Chelsey Johnson, and Holly Schmitt, ranked second from a field of eight teams which evaluated the same operating dairy in the tri-state area. The team was coached by Kenneth Kalscheur and he was assisted by David Casper and Melissa Schmitt. In addition, a number of industry professionals assisted with practices to help prepare the team. In addition, the team visited five dairies in South Dakota and Southwest Minnesota for practice in preparation for the national dairy challenge contest. Collegiate participants visited six dairy farms in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio, as part of their training to help farmers evaluate and adapt management to optimize success and animal care. Also, industry professionals presented cutting-edge research, new programs and career opportunities to students. Each contest team received information from an area dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of the dairy, students interviewed the herd owners. Each team developed a farm analysis and recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. The event culminated with team members presenting recommendations and then fielding questions from a panel of judges. These official judges included dairy producers and industry experts in dairy finances, reproduction, nutrition and animal health. Presentations were evaluated for accuracy of analysis and recommendations, with awards presented at a final banquet. Team member Chelsey Johnson described the contest as “an excellent capstone to test what you have learned throughout college.” Johnson explained, “In class we gain the background knowledge and skills needed to apply information. Dairy Challenge gave us the opportunity to apply information and ultimately has given us the confidence we need to work in the industry. I would encourage all students to take advantage of this opportunity!” Team member Matt Holdvogt gave similar praise of the experience. “After participating in Dairy Challenge, I can say that I learned just as much-if not more from Challenge as I have from all the various classes I have taken because it allows for real world application,” Holdvogt said. “I have further developed abilities of working within a team, presenting, and financial impacts of changes towards farms. They don’t teach that in a classroom. That comes from experience, and classrooms can’t show that.”

The Dairy Challenge Academy was developed in 2013 to expand this educational and networking event to more college students. Academy student-participants also analyzed and developed recommendations for operating dairies; however, the Academy was organized in mixed-university teams with two Advisors to help coach these younger students. Academy participants from South Dakota State University included Jennifer Casperson, Sam Fuchs, Emily Martin, Riley Pitman, and Sara Sontag.

2013

Dairy Challenge 2013

Left to right: Kenneth Kalscheur (coach), Alisha Vander Wal, Cassandra Hulstein, April Johnson, and Lael Schoessler.

The South Dakota State University Dairy Challenge Team placed first in the 12th Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC), held April 4th - 6th in Fort Wayne, IN.  This was the first time that SDSU has placed 1st in this competition.  The SDSU team included Cassandra Hulstein, April Johnson, Lael Schoessler, and Alisha Vander Wal and was coached by Dr. Kenneth Kalscheur, Dr. David Casper, and Melissa Schmidt.  A total of 128 students from 32 different universities across the U.S. and Canada participated in the contest.  The three-day competition began with analysis of farm data and records, followed by a walk-through of the dairy operation, and a question-and-answer session with dairy owners.  Each team then developed recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing, and financial management.  The teams presented their recommendations to the owners, while being evaluated by a panel of five judges including dairy producers, veterinarians, farm finance specialists, and industry specialists.  Members of the team were each awarded a $200 scholarship.  Participants of the Dairy Challenge all agreed that this competition was a great opportunity to apply information learned through their dairy science coursework at SDSU.  Team member Cassandra Hulstein stated “Through this experience I learned how to think like a consultant, and how to present my findings, and this enhanced my critical thinking skills.”

2012

Dairy Challenge 2012

Left to right: Megan Forst, Megan Rice; back – Kenneth Kalscheur (coach), Kaitlin Hartkopf, Mitch Maher.

Four students from South Dakota State University traveled to Roanoke, Virginia to participate in the Eleventh Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) March 29-31, 2012. The SDSU Dairy Challenge Team consisted of Megan Forst from New Ulm, MN; Kaitlin Hartkopf from Howard Lake, MN; Mitch Maher, Nunda, SD; and Megan Rice from Firth, NE. The contest included 128 students from 32 universities and colleges across the United States and Canada. Associate Professor Kenneth Kalscheur, Assistant Professor David Casper, Assistant Farm Manager Melissa Schmitt, and Farm Manager Steve Crego helped coach the team. The two-day competition began with a walk-through of an operating dairy, analysis of farm data, and question and answer session with farm owners. Then each team developed recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing, and financial management. The teams presented their recommendations to owners, while being evaluated by a panel of five judges - dairy producers, veterinarians, farm finance specialists, and industry personnel. Team members commented that the contest is incomparable to other collegiate dairy experiences. The knowledge and hands-on experience gained through Dairy Challenge will be used by many participants for years to come. Earlier in the year, on January 31 to February 2, 2012, 5 SDSU students traveled to St. Joseph, MO to participate in the 10th annual Midwest Regional Dairy Challenge. SDSU students were mixed with students from 19 other Midwest universities and colleges to work in teams of 4 or 5 to assess all aspects of a working dairy farm and present recommendations to a panel of judges and the dairy farm owners. Representing SDSU was Megan Forst, Mitch Maher, Valerie Mohr, Megan Rice, and Ana Schweer.

2011

Dairy Challenge 2011

Left to right: front– Heather Jons, Katie Crocker, Melissa Lax; back– Kenneth Kalscheur (coach), Cory Zelfel.

The Dairy Challenge Team from South Dakota State University traveled to Hickory, North Carolina to participate in the Tenth Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) March 31 – April 2, 2011. The NAIDC was hosted by North Carolina State University and Virginia Tech. Teams from 30 different universities plus 2 composite teams competed at the 10th anniversary of the NAIDC. The SDSU Dairy Challenge Team consisted of Katie Crocker, Heather Jons, Melissa Lax, and Cory Zelfel. Arnold Hippen and Ken Kalscheur coached the team. The 2011 Midwest Regional Dairy Challenge was held in Menomonie, WI on Feb. 9-11, 2011. Students that participated in the Midwest Regional included Katie Crocker, Mike Dunn, Melissa Lax, Katie Nelson, and Ana Schweer. This contest will be remembered for the subzero temperatures during the farm visits!

2010

Dairy Challenge 2010

Left to right: Arnold Hippen (coach), Alex Ode, Abigail Wirt, Samantha Erickson, Holly Bruns, and Matthew Laubach (coach).

Students from South Dakota State University won a Platinum placing in the Ninth Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) held April 9-10, 2010, in Visalia, Calif. Hosted by California Polytechnic State University and California State University, Fresno, 28 teams from the United States and two teams from Canada competed. The team from South Dakota State University consisted of: Holly Bruns, Samantha Erikson, Abigail Wirt and Alex Ode. Matt Laubach and Arnold Hippen coached the team. NAIDC is an innovative two-day competition for students representing dairy science programs at North American universities. It enables students to apply theory and learning to a real-world dairy, while working as part of a four-person team. Day One of NAIDC began with each team receiving information about a working dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of one of four designated dairies, participants interviewed the herd managers. Then, each team developed a farm analysis and presentation, including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. Day Two was presentation day. Team members presented recommendations to a panel of judges and then fielded questions from the judges. Presentations were evaluated, based on the analysis and recommendations. The evening concluded with a reception and awards banquet. Team members described the contest as: “The best learning opportunity a dairy science major could ask for and the best contest I have been a part of.” - Samantha Erikson. “An educational, yet fun experience and a good way to gain knowledge of the dairy insustry.” - Holly Bruns. “ One of the most practical, hands-on learning experiences that employers look for as a means of identifying critical thinking and problem solving. In the dairy industry, businesses are essentially a team trying to help the producer succeed and also themselves in return. As a team of four students, we worked just as we would in the industry; our goal: happy, healthy and comfortable cows for a successful future.” - Abigail Wirt. “ A great learning opportunity to see how the dairy industry changes upon region, but the ultimate goal is still the same for all producers. Through Dairy Challenge you understand the challenges that producers also face and trying to help them become a better dairy gives you a great feeling of success.” – Alex Ode.

Dairy Challenge Regional 2010

Left to right: Cassey Utke, Holly Bruns, Cory Zelfel, Michael Dunn, Dr. Arnold Hippen (coach), Matthew Laubach (coach).

Four students from the SDSU Dairy Science Department, joined 62 other college students in participated in the sixth annual Midwest Dairy Challenge in Wooster, Ohio, February 11-13, 2010. The SDSU students attending from SDSU were Holly Bruns, Michael Dunn, Cassey Utke, and Cory Zelfel. This year’s contest, hosted by The Ohio State University, included students from 15 Universities and colleges across the Midwest including the University of Illinois, Iowa State University, Kansas State University, Lakeshore Technical College, Michigan State University, University of Minnesota, The Ohio State University, Ohio State University-Agricultural Technical Institute, Purdue University, South Dakota State University, Southwest Wisconsin Technical College, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Wisconsin-River Falls, University of Wisconsin-Platteville, and the UW-Madison Farm & Industry Short Course. Working in four- or five-person, mixed-university teams, students assessed all aspects of a working dairy farm and then presented their highest priority recommendations to a panel of judges and the dairy business owners. Teams were awarded Silver, Gold, or Platinum awards based upon their analysis of the business and the quality of their recommendations. Judges chose three teams as Platinum winners, the contest’s highest distinction. From SDSU, Holly Bruns was a member of a Platinum awarded team.Financial support for participation in the Dairy Challenge comes from generous contributions from dairy industry companies, dairy associations, and dairy business owners. The SDSU Dairy Challenge participants are grateful to all those involved in the dairy industry in South Dakota and surrounding area for their support allowing participation in these events. The SDSU team was coached by Dr. Arnold Hippen and Matt Laubach.

2009

Dairy Challenge 2009

Left to right: front - Jessica Berg and Tm Korver; back - Eric Schultz, John Temme and Matthew Laubach (coach).

South Dakota State Team earned a Silver Award at North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge Contest that was held in Syracuse, NY during 28-29 March. A total of 29 teams from the United States and two from Canada competed in the eighth annual event, hosted by the Northeast Region NAIDC committee. The team coached by Matt Laubach consisted of Jessica Berg, Baltic, SD; Tim Korver, Alton, IA; Eric Schultz, Rollingstone, MN.; and John Temme, Wayne, NE. Dairy Challenge was designed by professionals from the allied dairy industry and university educators to bring classroom training to life in the real world for students preparing for dairy careers. The SDSU team spent two days at the contest. On the first day, they combed through cow and farm management data, as well as financial records, then conducted an on-site evaluation. Later that day, they also interviewed the farm owner. After identify opportunities to increase efficiency and profitability for the herd owner, the team presented its findings to a judging panel comprised of a dairy business owner and four experts in dairy nutrition, herd health, reproduction, and financial management. Teams were judged on their analysis of the operation, recommendations, and overall presentation. Earlier in the year SDSU teams also participated in the Midwestern, and Western Dairy Challenge Contests. 

2008

Dairy Challenge 2008

Left to right: front - Peter Beck, Heather Rollefson; back - Matthew Laubach (coach), Gerben Landman, Craig Niemann, Arnold Hippen (coach).

Students from South Dakota State University earned a Gold placing in the Seventh Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) held April 4-5, 2008 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with 31 teams from the United States and one team from Canada competing. The SDSU team consisted of Heather Rollefson from Sibley, IA; Craig Niemann from Clear Lake, SD; Peter Beck from Princeton, MN; and Gerben Landman from White, SD. Matt Laubach and Arnold Hippen coached the team.

Day One of NAIDC began with each team receiving information about a working dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of one of four designated dairies, participants interviewed the herd managers. Then, each team developed a farm analysis and presentation materials, including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. Day Two was presentation day. Team members presented recommendations to a panel of judges and then fielded questions from the judges. Presentations were evaluated, based on the analysis and recommendations. The evening concluded with a reception and awards banquet.

Dairy Challenge 2008-2

Left to right: front - Peter Beck, Heather Rollefson; back - Gerben Landman, Craig Niemann.

The 2008 Western Regional Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge was held in Visalia, CA on February 29 and March 1. Fifty four students from seven universities attended and there were 11 teams of students. Students represented Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, California State University-Fresno, Texas A&M University, Washington State University, University of Idaho, South Dakota State University and Utah State University. All students visited and evaluated a local dairy farm that milked over 3,500 cows and had a total of 7,000 animals on site including heifers. Students participating from SDSU were Craig Neimann, Heather Rollefson, Gary Landman, and Peter Beck. Craig and Peter were on Platinum awarded teams.

Earlier in the year SDSU students participated in the Midwest Regional contest in Merrillville, IN along with students from 13 other universities, including Michigan State University, North Dakota State University, Ohio State University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Lakeshore Technical College, University of Illinois, Iowa State University, South Dakota State University, University of Minnesota, Kansas State University, Purdue University, University of Wisconsin-River Falls and Southwest Wisconsin Technical College. Rachel Patrick and Tim Korver were on a Platinum awarded team. Other participating students from SDSU were Heather Jons, Gerben Landman, Heather Rollefson, John Temme, Samantha Wahls, and Abbie Wirt.

The SDSU teams for both contests were coached by Matt Laubach and Dr. Arnold Hippen.

2007

The Midwest regional intercollegiate Dairy Challenge contest was Fond du Lac, Wisconsin on January 25-27, 2007. Eighty seven participants from 13 colleges and universities competed. Participating universities and colleges included Iowa State University, Lakeshore Technical College, Michigan State University, North Dakota State University, Northwest Missouri State University, Ohio State University, Purdue University, South Dakota State University, Southwest Wisconsin Technical College, University of Illinois, University of Minnesota, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and University of Wisconsin-River Falls.

Students were given two hours to evaluate one of three dairies located in the Fond du Lac area. Red Tail Ridge Dairy is a 750-cow freestall operation located near Malone that is owned by John and Diane Thome. Expansion to the current herd size was done in several stages, beginning in 2002. The rolling herd average is currently more than 26,000 pounds of milk. The Thomes farm nearly 1,000 acres and have dairied in the area since 1963. Just a few miles from Red Tail Ridge is 3D Dairy, owned by John, Linda, Joe and Bill Diederichs. 3D Dairy was built in 2000 after brothers, John, Joe and Bill, made the decision to combine their three separate herds into one facility. Today, the herd numbers 820 cows, and the brothers farm more than 1,750 acres. The third farm that hosted students was Ruedinger Farms, located near Van Dyne. The farm is owned by John and Karen Ruedinger, who milk 690 cows and farm about 1,200 acres. The dairy employs 12 full-time workers.

Students participating from South Dakota State University included Peter Beck, Brad Korver, Gerben Landman, Craig Niemann, Heather Rollefson, Jared Schaffer, Janora Smith, John Temme, and Ryan Tollefsrud. Dr. Arnold Hippen served as coach for the SDSU students. Heather Rollefson and Janora Smith, Dairy Production majors, were members of teams that were selected as Platinum performers, the contest’s highest distinction.Jared, Peter, Craig and John were on teams that placed in the Gold category, and Gerben and Brad were on the Silver team.

2006

Dairy Challenge 2006

Left to right: included: (front row) Brennen Farley, Adam Ward, Janora Smith (SDSU), Mike Lax (SDSU) and Tim Zweber; and (back row) Sarah Mullen, Kyle Koester, Jenny Brown, John Heinsohn and William Harmeyer.

The Midwest Regional Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge contest was hosted by South Dakota State University in Brookings on January 26-28, 2006. The contest, featured 68 participants from ten colleges and universities. Schools represented included Iowa State University, North Dakota State University, Purdue, Ridgewater College, South Dakota State University, University of Illinois, University of Minnesota, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and Northeast Iowa Community College.

Students were given one hour to evaluate one of two dairies located near Brookings. This included Hill Top Dairy LLC, owned by Dr. Howard Whitmore and managed by Mike Guggisberg. The dairy is located near Elkton, SD and is home to 1,400 milking cows milked three times a day in a 40-stall rotary parlor. The other dairy evaluated, Linde Dairy, is owned by Rein and Boukje Landman. The couple moved to White, SD in 2003. and began milking 75 cows. Today, the farm is home to 292 cows on test, with a rolling herd average of 30,656 pounds of milk. Students participating from South Dakota State University included Andrew Doll, Chris Hulstein, Brad Korver, Gary Landman, Mike Lax, Heather Rollefson, Janora Smith, and Ryan Tollefsrud. Darrel Rennich and Arnold Hippen served as coaches for the SDSU students. Mike Lax and Janora Smith, Dairy Production majors, were members of teams that were selected as Platinum performers, the contest’s highest distinction.

2005

Regional Dairy Challenge

Dairy Challenge 2005a

The platinum winners at the inaugural Midwest Dairy Challenge were: (front row, left to right) Maya Kuratomi, Glen Groth, Bill Jansen, Sharon Green and Nate Odden; (back row, left to right) Charlie Henn, Ryan Aberle, Andrew Kobe, Kaia Wilson, Erin Wacker, Joe Tarkowsk, Luke Buttles and Jacob Pruemer.

The Midwest regional intercollegiate Dairy Challenge contest was held at the Dairy Center of the Northeast Iowa Community-Based Dairy Foundation and hosted by Northeast Iowa Community College. The contest, which ran January 27-29, 2005, featured 63 participants from eight different schools. Schools represented included Iowa State University, Michigan State University, North Dakota State University, South Dakota State University, University of Illinois, University of Minnesota, University of Wisconsin-River Falls and Northeast Iowa Community College.

Students were given one hour to evaluate one of two dairies located in the region. This included Foresight Dairy LLC, the partnership of Dan and Sondra Hotvedt, Dave and Jean Wise, and Dick and Julie Wise, is located near Hesper, Iowa. The dairy is home to 725 milking cows with a rolling herd average more than 25,000 pounds of milk on three-times-a-day milking.

The other dairy evaluated is owned by Randy and Denise Buddenberg. In 1984, the couple moved to Decorah, Iowa, and began milking 75 cows. Today, the farm is home to 292 cows on test, with a rolling herd average of 30,656 pounds of milk.

Kia Wilson, Dairy Production major, was among teams that were selected as Platinum performers, the contest’s highest distinction.

Dairy Challenge

Dairy Challenge 2005b

Left to right: Kaia Wilson and Kristin Kuhl; Back Row, left to right: coach, Dr. Arnold Hippen, Steven Van Dyke and Justin Morehouse.

The Fourth Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) was held April 8-9, 2005 in State College, PA with Pennsylvania State University hosting. 26 teams from the United States and 1 team from Canada competed. The South Dakota State University team won a Gold placing. The team from South Dakota State University consisted of: Kaia Wilson, Kristin Kuhl, Justin Morehouse, and Steven Van Dyke. Dr. Arnold Hippen and Darrel Rennich coached the team. NAIDC is an innovative two-day competition for students representing dairy science programs at North American universities. It enables students to apply theory and learning to a real-world dairy, while working as part of a four-person team. Team member, Steve VanDyke, described the challenge as an excellent opportunity to learn and open doors in career fields. “The friends we make and the professionals and students we meet will be extremely beneficial in the future.” Team member, Kaia Wilson, described the contest as a learning experience and recommends any student take the opportunity to participate in Dairy Challenge or similar activity.

Sponsors of the SDSU Dairy Challenge Team are West Central Soy, Alltech Inc., Diamond V, Elanco, and Dairy Net 2000.

2004

Dairy Challenge 2004

Left to right: Front row - Anna Alexander, Shannon Sellner.  Back row - Derek Shumaker, Pat Conlan, coach Darrel Rennich, and coach, Dr. Arnold Hippen.

The students from the Dairy Science Department at South Dakota State University won a gold placing in the Third Annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) April 2-3, 2004, in Altoona, Pa. Penn State University hosted the 2004 contest, with a record number of teams competing.

The team from SDSU consisted of: Derek Shumaker from Canistota, SD; Shannon Sellner from Sleepy Eye, MN; Pat Conlan from Cresco, IA; and Anna Alexander from Brookings, SD. Darrel Rennich and Arnold Hippen coached the team.

NAIDC is an innovative two-day competition for students representing dairy science programs at North American universities. It enables students to apply theory and learning to a real-world dairy, while working as part of a four-person team.

Day One of NAIDC began with each team receiving information about a working dairy, including production and farm management data. After an in-person inspection of one of three designated dairies, participants interviewed the herd managers. Then each team developed a farm analysis and presentation materials, including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management.

Day Two was presentation day. Team members presented recommendations to a panel of judges and then fielded questions from the judges. Presentations were evaluated, based on the analysis and recommendations. The evening concluded with a reception and awards banquet.

Team member Shannon Sellner described the contest as “The Dairy Challenge put our skills to the test. Not only our dairying skills, but management, team, and communication skills. This was a wonderful opportunity to network with industry professionals." Anna Alexander added that “The Challenge not only allowed us to demonstrate the knowledge we have gained in college, it also prepared us for our future careers teaching us to look deeper to find the problems that we may face and create solutions that are obtainable for dairymen and women.”

The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge 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 careers in the dairy industry. Supported financially through generous donations by agribusinesses and coordinated by a volunteer steering committee, the first NAIDC was held in April 2002.

Generous support from corporate sponsors makes NAIDC possible. In 2004, platinum sponsors include: Ag Enhance Program of NE Farm Credit, Arm & Hammer Animal Nutrition Group, Bioproducts Inc., Cargill Animal Nutrition, DairyBusiness Communications, Dairy Herd Management, Dairy One, Dairy Records Management Systems, Diamond V Mills, Elanco Animal Health, Farm Credit System Foundation, Genex Cooperative Inc., Monsanto Dairy Business, Pfizer Animal Health, Select Sires Inc., Soy Best and West Central Soy. Gold sponsors in 2004 include: ABS Global, Ag Choice Farm Credit ACA, Alta Genetics Inc., Charleston/Orwig, Hubbard Feeds Inc., Land O’Lakes Feed, Mid-Atlantic Farm Credit ACA, Morgan&Myers Inc., Prince Agri Products Inc., Renaissance Nutrition, ReQuest Ltd. and Zinpro Corp.

Local sponsors of the SDSU team include: West Central Soy, Dairy Net 2000, Monsanto Dairy Business, Alltech Inc., Land O’Lakes Feed, and the SDSU Dairy Club.

2003

Dairy Challenge 2003

Left to right: Ann Harvey, Karissa Nielsen, CHarity Skogrand, Lorinda Harkness, Mark Qual, and coach Darrel Rennich.

he South Dakota State University team placed in the Gold Category at the recent North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge.

The gold category placed SDSU among the top four or five colleges of the 24 competing. Competitors are classed into platinum -- the very top ranking -- and gold and silver categories.

SDSU team members were Mark Qual, Lisbon, N.D.; Karissa Nielsen, Howard; Ann Harvey, Ree Heights; and Charity Skogrand, Glenwood, Minn. Lorinda Harkness of Gillett, Penn., also competed on an aggregate team with individuals from three other universities.

The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) 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 careers in the dairy industry.

As part of the competition, each four-person team received information about a working dairy, including production and farm-management data. After an in-person inspection of one of three designated dairies, participants conducted interviews with the herd managers. Then each team developed a farm analysis and presentation materials, including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management.

On the second day of the competition, team members gave a Powerpoint presentation and made formal recommendations to a panel of judges, then fielded questions from the judges.