Maine students visit New York dairy farms in national competition
Twelve students from the University of Maine Animal and Veterinary Sciences Program competed in the North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge held in Saratoga Springs, New York from March 30–April 1, 2023, with more than 250 students from across the U.S. and Canada.
The Dairy Challenge is an industry led program to develop the next generation of agriculturists to understand modern dairy farming. In the Dairy Challenge, teams of university students evaluate a dairy, then present their findings to a panel of judges. The judges, who represent various aspects of the dairy industry, also evaluate the farm, and provide guidance and feedback to the students. The student presentations are evaluated on their content, delivery and agreement with the judges findings. These evaluations are shared with the dairy owner for their consideration.
“The students never know what to expect on these farms, so the competition is a test of everything they have learned throughout their college career. It is also a tremendous opportunity to network with sponsors, local farm owners, and industry professionals, and the impact is endless,” said David Marcinkowski, the team’s coach and associate professor and dairy specialist at UMaine.
Saratoga Springs is also known for its world-class horse racing. While there, the team visited the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.