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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

    June 20, 2016

    24 selected for inaugural agriculture summer academy

    Twenty-four area high school students will get hands-on lessons in the ever-changing world of precision agriculture technologies this week when Northwest Missouri State University hosts the first AgriVision Equipment Group Precision Agriculture Summer Academy.

    The summer academy is Tuesday, June 21, through Thursday, June 23, on the Northwest campus.

    “We are excited to host the AgriVision Equipment Group Precision Agriculture Summer Academy for high school students and agricultural educators,” said Rod Barr, the director of Northwest’s School of Agricultural Sciences. “The collaborative efforts of AgriVision Equipment Group and the School of Agricultural Sciences at Northwest will expose students and agricultural educators to some of the latest technologies being utilized in agriculture today. Our goal is to expand the awareness of students and agricultural educators on the impact that technology has in today’s agricultural industry.”

    Students and agriculture educators will advance their knowledge in precision agriculture technologies while partnering and networking with industry professionals. With Northwest faculty and AgriVision staff leading the instruction, students will explore the use of global positioning systems (GPS), auto-guidance technology, precision application, remote sensing, geographic information systems and data collection management.

    Students were selected for the summer academy on the basis of an application and reference letters. Participating students have completed their sophomore or junior years of high school and are active members of a 4-H club or FFA chapter. High school agriculture educators from schools of the selected students also will participate.

    The students hail from throughout Missouri, from Maryville to Neosho, and include four from beyond the state’s borders. The summer academy’s enrollment includes two students from Shenandoah High School, one from Glenwood High School and one from Leon’s Central Decatur High School in Iowa.

    Selected students and their high school educators are attending the summer academy at no cost through scholarships awarded to cover their lodging, food, materials, supplies and tuition.

    AgriVision Equipment, a locally owned and operated company with 13 locations across southern Iowa, is sponsoring the summer academy.

    “The world of precision agriculture is exciting, and an area in which we see tremendous growth opportunities for growers around us in the Midwest and all over the world,” said Jeremy Ostrander, the chief executive officer of AgriVision Equipment Group. “We also see it as a tremendous career growth area, and that’s why AgriVision Equipment Group is partnering with Northwest Missouri State University to create and provide this summer’s academy to bring inspired people together to share, to learn, and to better understand that agriculture is a growth industry, now and hundreds of years into the future.”

    The initiative arose from a partnership Northwest and AgriVision Equipment formed last year to enhance the profession-based experiences agriculture students receive at the University and in the region. AgriVision Equipment proactively collaborates with Northwest by participating in its Career Day and Mock Interview Days, and its employees serve on advisory committees. 

    Northwest’s thriving School of Agricultural Sciences is experiencing rapid growth with nearly 600 students – or more than 10 percent of the University’s undergraduate population – enrolled in its programs during 2015-2016. Those students are gaining real-life, hands-on experience at the 448-acre Wright Farm, which is home to beef, swine, dairy and sheep herds as well as row, silage and hay crops.

    Northwest offers agriculture-based majors and minors in the areas of agronomy, animal science, business, communications, education, finance, horticulture, science and precision ag, in addition to a two-year farm operations certificate and master’s programs. Additionally, nearly 98 percent of agriculture students earning a degree from Northwest find employment or continue their education upon graduation, according to the most recent data. To learn more about Northwest’s School of Agricultural Sciences, visit

    For more information, please contact:

    Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

    Northwest Missouri State University
    215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468