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Penn State Continues Winning Tradition at 2015 Northeast Student Affiliate Contest

Posted: February 19, 2015

Penn State was top team overall, and individual teams placed first, second, third and seventh, with teams from 10 institutions participating.
Top team at NESA, from left: Olivia Rush, Chad Horst, Stephen Smith and Amy Kraus

Top team at NESA, from left: Olivia Rush, Chad Horst, Stephen Smith and Amy Kraus

Students from Penn State's Department of Animal Science took first place overall at the 2015 Northeast Affiliate (NESA) competitions of the Student Affiliate Division (SAD) of the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA).  The four Penn State teams took first, second, third and seventh out of the 46 teams participating. Other institutions participating included University of Connecticut, University of Delaware, Delaware Valley College, University of Maine, University of Massachusetts, University of Maryland, University of New Hampshire, University of Rhode Island, and Rutgers University.

Members of the Penn State overall teams were:

1. First place -Chad Horst, Newmanstown, PA; Amy Kraus, Aliquippa, PA; Olivia Rush, Doylestown, PA; and Stephen Smith, Hawley, PA.

2. Second place -Gearet FitzPatrick, Kensington, MD; Ben LeCrone, Alexandria, PA; Kelley Jay, Artemas, PA; and Kyle Sollenberger, Spring City, PA.

3. Third place-Amber Gabel, Newport, PA; Samantha Lykon, Swoyersville, PA; Nicole McCord, Delta, PA; and Michelle Morelli, Rydal, PA.

4. Seventh place-Susan Hawkins, Lebanon, PA; Samantha McKinney, Rebersburg, PA; Mallory Perchinski, White Deer, PA; and Max Wolf, Lebanon, CT.

Dr. Terry Etherton, Head of the Department of Animal Science, said, "These outstanding results reflect the deep commitment of our faculty to teaching excellence, and the strong dedication of Penn State students to the hard work of preparation and continuing our legacy of excelling in this annual educational event. I congratulate all of our students who participated, as well as all those who contributed to making this year's contest a success. It was an honor for Penn State to host this demanding contest."

Penn State students performed well throughout the competition. The four teams placed in the top ten for judging, with seven students placing in the top ten judging individuals. The winning judging team consisted of Horst, Kraus, Rush, and Smith, with the team of Hawkins, McKinney, Perchinski, and Wolf placing second.  Individually, Kelley Jay earned second place followed by Horst in third. Other top ten judging individuals included Sollenberger, fifth; Rush, sixth; Perchinski, seventh; McCord, eighth; and Kraus, tenth.  In the quiz bowl contest, the team of Horst, Kraus, Rush, and Smith defeated the team of Gabel, Lykon, McCord, and Morelli in the final. Amy Kraus earned first place and Caitlyn Pool placed third in the undergraduate presentation contest.

As the host school, Penn State students were involved in many months of planning. Isaac Haagen, Howard, PA, served as overall chair, with Block and Bridle Club and Dairy Science Club students serving as committee chairs to organize the event. Sponsors for this event included the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences, the Penn State Stockmen's Club, Penn State Ag Alumni Society, Penn State Dairymen's Club, and Penn-Ag Industries.

The NESA competitions are held each February. NESA is the Northeast Student Affiliate of the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) and the American Society of Animal Sciences (ASAS).