An extra swarm of students will descend on Kansas State University when K-State’s College of Agriculture will host the 2017 North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture Judging Conference April 6-8 in Manhattan.

More than 800 college students and faculty from 49 public and private two- and four-year institutions will compete in agriculture-related competitions, including agribusiness, agricultural communications, crops, dairy judging, equine management, horticulture, livestock judging, livestock management, computer applications, meat judging, precision agriculture and soils.

K-State agronomy professor Kevin Donnelly is coordinating the event.

A highlight of the competition, Donnelly said, is the Knowledge Bowl, in which teams from each school field questions from across categories. Those teams compete in preliminary rounds for a chance to advance to the finals and may be asked, for example, about nutrition for horses, using computer programs for agriculture, soil nutrients, meat grading and more. What competitors may not do is use cell phones, calculators or reference materials of any kind.

Students will also tour local sites including the Kansas Wheat Innovation Center, Hal Ross Flour Mill, O.H. Kruse Feed Technology Innovation Center, Liquid Art Winery and Estate, and the Konza Prairie.

The conference ends with an awards banquet on April 8. A sweepstakes award will be presented to the top two- and four-year school based on overall team placings in at least seven of the 13 events. 

The conference is supported by contributions from the agricultural industry, including overall event sponsors John Deere and the CHS Foundation.

 

More information about the 2017 conference is available at www.ag.k-state.edu/nacta/