Current Progressive Dairy digital edition

I belong to... Washington State Dairy Club: Brooke Vander Veen

PD staff Published on 22 August 2011


Hometown: Everson, Washington.



My dairy background: My three siblings and I were born the fifth generation of American dairy farmers. We were raised on our family farm of 650 Holstein cows. Recently, our farm made the transition to our current herd of 150 Jersey cows. I raise and show Guernseys that are intermixed with my family’s herd. Working with multiple breeds has been a beneficial learning experience.

Year in school and area of study: Junior with an agricultural education major and animal science minor.

If I wasn’t studying agriculture/dairy, I would be ... employed in an agricultural facet.

I have been a member of the dairy club for ... 2 years.

I joined our club because ... I have a true appreciation for the dairy industry and love collaborating with like-minded individuals in promoting our industry. WSU Dairy Club provides multiple opportunities for networking within the industry, community service and dairy education that only enhance my classroom experiences.

A little-known fact about our club is … that we are comprised of a high majority of female dairy enthusiasts.


One of the hardest-working or most well-known members of the club is ... our officer team because these dedicated individuals coordinate our club meetings and events while encouraging participation from our members. The officer team leads by example and works diligently throughout the year.

My favorite club event is ... Dairy Olympics because this event creates an excellent opportunity for non-dairy students across the university to participate in dairy activities. University clubs are invited to participate in this annual event for a small fee and then compete against each other at the WSU Dairy in challenges such as a calf relay race, cow hand-milking contest and cow-pie making.

Students from various backgrounds gain knowledge of the dairy industry in a fun and competitive way, and the winning club earns back half of the total registration fees. Education and hands-on activities make Dairy Olympics a true success!

An influential supporter/faculty/mentor whom I’ve met through the club is ... our Dairy Club Adviser Dr. Larry Fox.

He is helpful/influential because ... of his selfless dedication to our club and to the dairy industry. Dr. Fox is extremely knowledgeable about the dairy industry and serves as a professor, researcher and friend to his students. His sense of humor and bright smile create a positive attitude at all our Dairy Club events. It is undeniable that the WSU Dairy Club owes its success to Dr. Fox’s 25 years of dedication as adviser.

I hope my legacy as president will be ... an irreversible creation of enthusiasm for our club and the dairy industry that is founded on community outreach and club development. I hope to inspire students to find their individual place within the dairy industry and to encourage each member to continue to see our industry as an exciting opportunity.


My advice to all dairy students is ... to find that niche within the dairy industry that you love and then pursue it! Our industry is a constantly evolving legacy that needs the spirit of our generation. No matter your interests within the dairy industry, there are countless avenues that are available for you. Follow what you love!

My future involvement in the dairy industry will include … teaching agricultural education to high school students while staying involved in the dairy industry through my small herd of Guernseys and dairy organizations. PD

WSU Dairy Club
116 Clark Hall
Pullman, Washington 99164
(509) 335-5523

Members: 30

Number of students in leadership roles or on executive committee: 10

Biggest fundraiser and/or club event: Our dairy club hosts Cougar Youth Weekend each spring where approximately 30 4-H and FFA dairy youth travel to our campus and university dairy farm to participate in Judging and Fitting and Showing workshops, followed by competitions on the final day of the weekend. This is a great opportunity for our club to reach out to the youth of our state and teach them the knowledge of the dairy industry. At the same time, this is a beneficial event for our club members to gain skills in public speaking, organization and hands-on teaching. The excitement shared by both the youth and our club members is inspirational!

Club mission: Washington State University Dairy Club is focused on promoting the dairy industry through educational activities that benefit our community, university, and club members.