Teams from California Polytechnic State University, Cornell University, The Ohio State University and University of Wisconsin-Madison earned the highest award – First Place Platinum – in the ninth annual North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC), held April 9-10, in the Visalia, Calif. area.

Hosted by Cal Poly and California State University-Fresno, NAIDC 2010 attracted teams from 30 universities located throughout the United States and Canada. Each team of four was challenged to put their textbook and practical knowledge to the ultimate test – analyzing dairies. The contest started with a walk-through at one of the four host dairies, followed by the opportunity to ask questions of the owners and analyze farm-specific data. Teams then used this information and their observations to develop management recommendations, and then presented their recommendations to the herd owners and a panel of five dairy industry judges.

Members of the First Place Platinum teams received $200 scholarships. This was the second consecutive year for teams from Ohio State and UW-Madison to earn the contest’s highest ranking.

Ohio State’s team, coached by Maurice Eastridge, consisted of Ryan Conklin, Annie Eilenfeld, Heather Moff and Amanda Paulhamus.

Members of the UW-Madison team were Robb Bender, Lydia Hardie, Ashley Sprengeler and Melvin Zenner. They were coached by Dave Combs and Lizzy French.

The Cal Poly team of Anthony Martin, Brian Medeiros, Katherine Rector and Michael Wesselink was coached by Stan Henderson.

Cornell University team members were Brett Feldpausch, Breanna Fulper, Shane Reynolds and Chad Wall. Team coach was Michael Van Amburgh.

Scholarships of $100 were presented to members of the Second Place Platinum teams:

  • University of Idaho: Carl Betts, Crystal Burke, Stewart Russell and Jackie Wuebben; Amin Ahmadzadeh, coach.
  • South Dakota State University: Holly Bruns, Alex Ode, Samantha Wahls and Abigail Wirt; Arnold Hippen and Matt Laubach, coaches.
  • University of Guelph: Steven Larmer, Martina Pfister, Caitlin Shirreff and Ryan Wynands; John Walton, coach.
  • Penn State University: Janelle Hartzell, Amy Miller, Elizabeth Smith and Peter Yoder; Gabriella Varga, coach.

Gold Awards were presented to teams from Iowa State University, Mississippi State University, Purdue University, University of Minnesota, Virginia Tech, Delaware Valley College, University of Wisconsin-River Falls, Alabama A&M University, University of Florida and University of Kentucky.

Silver Awards went to teams from California State University-Fresno, University of Vermont, University of Wisconsin-Platteville, North Carolina State University, University of Alberta, West Virginia University, Clemson University, Kansas State University, Louisiana State University, Michigan State University, University of Maine and Washington State University.

"The Dairy Challenge brings the future of the dairy industry together in one location where knowledge and experiences are shared and gained, and where they gain a broader perspective of the market we participate in,” said NAIDC chairman Barry Putnam. “That is why the Dairy Challenge is so highly thought of by all of those who have participated throughout our history of now just over 2,000 future leaders."

Host dairies for the 2010 NAIDC were Delta View Farms, owned by Gregory “Butch” Dias Jr. and sons Greg and Darren; El Monte Dairy, operated by Art and Sandra Van Beek; Longfellow Farming Co., George and Bill Longfellow, owners; and Valley View Farms, operated by Ken and Joanne Walker and John and Hilda Knevelbaard.

2010 NAIDC coordinators were Tami Tollenaar of Tollenaar Holsteins Dairy and Luciene Ribeiro of APC Inc.

About Dairy Challenge

The mission of the North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge is to facilitate education, communication and an exchange of ideas among students, agribusiness, dairy producers and universities that enhances the development of the dairy industry and its leaders.

Hosted by North Carolina State University and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, the 2011 national contest will be held March 31-April 2, 2011, in Hickory, N.C. Four regional contests are scheduled for late fall 2010 and winter 2011.

The program is fully funded through the generous support of companies and producer associations serving the dairy industry, as well as a growing number of individual dairy business owners. For more information or to become a sponsor of the Dairy Challenge program, visit or contact Molly J. Kelley, NAIDC Executive Director, at

Source: North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge