Cal Poly Dairy Judging Team Earns Top Honors at Southwestern Livestock Exposition
SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly’s dairy judging team earned the highest team ranking Jan. 14 at the Fort Worth Stock Show Dairy Judging contest in Texas.
Fourteen teams representing many of the top college dairy programs in the nation competed, with Cal Poly placing as the High Team Overall. Cal Poly also placed first in reasons, first in the Jersey breed, second in Brown Swiss, and third in Holsteins.
Individual team members also placed highly, including sophomore Brandon Almeida of Hilmar, California, who received the High Individual Overall. Almeida placed first in Jerseys and was fifth in oral reasons. Senior Caitlin Lopes of Los Banos, California, placed third in oral reasons, and teammate Hannah Neer of San Luis Obispo, California, placed fourth.
The top three overall winning teams were Cal Poly, Iowa State and Ohio State.
Working on four-person teams, the students judged 10 classes of dairy cattle. Each contestant then gave an oral presentation (called reasons) defending their placings for four of those classes.
Cal Poly’s dairy cattle judging teams are coached by dairy science Lecturer Rich Silacci and assisted by Professor Stan Henderson.
“Our students work incredibly hard to prepare for these judging competitions,” Silacci said. “It’s great to see their time and dedication pay off in Texas.”
About Cal Poly’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
Cal Poly is a nationally ranked, comprehensive polytechnic university. The university’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences is comprised of expert faculty members who take pride in their ability to transform academically motivated students into innovative professionals ready to solve the complex challenges associated with feeding the world in sustainable ways. Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories, including ranch land, orchards, vineyards and forests, all of which provide the basis for Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing methodology. It is the fifth-largest college of agriculture in the country, with 4,000 undergraduate students.
Pictured from left to right are students Hank DeVries, Nicolas Marsigli, Brandon Almeida, Hannah Neer, Caitlin Lopes, Alexandria Lopes and Jack Vander Dussen, and coach Rich Silacci.
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