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CSI Agriculture Students Bring Home Banners from National Event

Release Date: Monday 2023-04-24

Students from the College of Southern Idaho Agriculture Department recently attended the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Collegiate Judging Conference at Modesto Junior College in Modesto, California along with 438 college students plus their coaches and instructors. 18 students and two advisors from CSI along with one volunteer coach from the University of Idaho attended the event in Modesto. 

Teams from 50 two-year colleges and four-year universities competed in 17 different events. CSI students competed in Knowledge Bowl, Ag Mechanics, Horticulture, Livestock Management, Equine Management, Livestock Judging, Soils, and Veterinary Science. 

In the multi-disciplinary Knowledge Bowl with double elimination rounds, CSI advanced to the Final 4 semi-finals along with Blackhawk College (IL), Northeast College (NE), North Dakota State College of Science (ND) and earned the 4th Place banner after a loss to Blackhawk College. Northeast College from Nebraska won the event. The Knowledge Bowl team members were Mattie Merritt (Round Mountain, NV), Amie Betzold (Nampa, ID), William Harrison (Heyburn, ID), Synovia Bates (Nampa, ID), and Caleb Hampton (Moore, ID).  

The CSI Equine Management, Horticulture, Ag Mechanics, and Vet Science teams all took 2nd place and the Soils team earned 3rd place in the two-year college divisions. The following students were recognized with individual awards: William Harrison (Heyburn, ID)- 2nd High Individual in Ag Mechanics; Riley Hayes (Georgetown, ID)- 4th High Individual in Horticulture; Alaina Groom (Mountain Home, ID)- 5th High Individual in Horticulture; Isabella Mickelsen (Rexburg, ID)- 5th High Individual in Soils; Courtney Beene (Rupert, ID)- 5th High Individual in Vet Science.  

In addition to participating in competitions throughout the week, the group visited several agricultural businesses including Yellow Petal Flower Farm, Boviteq California, Vierra and Rocking S Dairy, and Hilmar Cheese to engage with industry professionals and learn about current issues facing agriculture.  

The NACTA Judging Conference focuses on developing students within North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture member institutions. The goal is to provide an important component in preparing students for a career in an agriculture related field. Judging competition enhances decision-making ability, prioritization skills, communication skills and technical abilities within a student's chosen field.  

Media Contact:
Courtney Salmon
CSI Public Information Manager | 208-732-6299