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1009 PD: Proud to learn on the dairy

Published on 29 June 2009

Proud to Dairy and Progressive Dairyman were recently proud to sponsor shirts for this year’s class of students attending the Southern Great Plains Dairy Consortium (SGPDC).

The consortium is a great opportunity for students to get important experience on large dairies in the Southwest. Below is a message from one of the students expressing why the event is valuable. The author, Chad Mullins, is a Ph.D. student with a dairy nutrition emphasis at Kansas State University. He writes:

“The average dairy producer needs a list of skills that no one degree plan can offer. The consortium has risen as an opportunity to help students interested in the dairy industry to gain knowledge of large-dairy management skills, dairy genetics, herd health, facility designs and most importantly to give hands-on experience to students by visiting dairies in the Southwest and teaching them different approaches that have kept these dairies in business in spite of economic hard times.

“The consortium enables students to learn in an atmosphere that one day they might work in. Currently the class has 24 students enrolled from colleges from southern and western states. Many colleges in these regions of the U.S. have eliminated dairy science classes because of a lack of student interest. The uniqueness of this program prepares students for large-herd dairy management, while bringing in dairy industry experts from across the country on a weekly basis to teach about a specific field of interest and give their expert recommendations.

“As a student here in New Mexico, I can honestly admit that I have gained more knowledge on dairy genetics, milk quality, mastitis, herd evaluations, reproduction and different facility designs than I could have ever learned in one dairy science course. More importantly, this program enables students to make lasting friendships and contacts within the dairy industry that will last for a lifetime.”

Membership update
More than 150 members have now joined the Proud to Dairy network online at www.proudtodairy.com. In the last three weeks, Wisconsin, Idaho and California have all added two more members from their states. PD

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