The Dairy Club at Virginia Tech earned several awards at the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) national conference, including recognition as the 2006 Outstanding Chapter in the Student Affiliate Division. This was the fourteenth time since 1980 that the Virginia Tech club has received the award, more than any other participating university club.

“I was very pleased and proud of the group,” said David Winston, faculty advisor of the Dairy Club and a Virginia Cooperative Extension 4-H youth specialist, dairy. “They do great work for the university and are an amazing organization to advise.”

The Virginia Tech students were among nearly 120 students and almost 3,000 dairy science professionals from throughout North America who attended the ADSA July 8-11 conference in Minneapolis, Minn., and celebrated the organization’s centennial anniversary.

The Dairy Club, a student curricular organization in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Department of Dairy Science, gives members a chance to learn about the dairy industry and related career opportunities through campus activities and community service. According to Winston, the group has about 85 student members from various academic departments.

In addition to the Outstanding Chapter Award, several students won individual prizes and distinctions. Rena Johnson of Glade Spring, Va., a 2006 dairy science graduate, received the Genevieve Christen Award, which recognizes undergraduate students for their demonstrated leadership, academic achievement, industry involvement, and participation in national and local dairy science organization activities. The award comes with a $1,000 stipend.

Casey Marstaller of North Yarmouth, Maine, a senior dairy science and English double major, was picked as the student division’s first vice president for the upcoming academic year.

The students ranked in each category for the paper presentations as well. Jeremy Yoder of Gladys, Va., a 2006 dairy science graduate, won first place in the dairy production category for his talk, “Why Crossbreed Dairy Cattle?” The team earned second place in both the dairy foods and original research papers and third place for both its website and chapter yearbook, The Milky Way.

At the annual meeting, the Virginia Tech and other students participated in a “Leaders in Training” career symposium and a dairy quiz bowl, where the Virginia Tech panel placed second. Students also had an opportunity to attend presentations by the professional members of the organizations, as well as the awards luncheon which featured ADSA “pioneers” who shared important events in the history of both the national association and the dairy science industry.

Established in 1906, ADSA is a scientific and educational association that serves the diary and dairy-related industries. It aids the discovery, application, and dissemination of dairy science knowledge and information.

Ranked 11th in agricultural research expenditures by the National Science Foundation, Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences offers students the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s leading agricultural scientists. The college’s comprehensive curriculum gives students a balanced education that ranges from food and fiber production to economics to human health. The college is a national leader in incorporating technology, biotechnology, computer applications, and other recent scientific advances into its teaching program.