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July 19, 2017
Twenty-four students representing 20 area high schools received hands-on lessons June 20-22 in the ever-changing world of precision agriculture technologies when Northwest Missouri State University hosted the second annual AgriVision Equipment Precision Agriculture Summer Academy.
“The AgriVision Equipment Precision Agriculture Summer Academy is a great example of how the agricultural industry and the University can come together to promote profession-based learning experiences,” Rod Barr, the director of Northwest’s School of Agricultural Sciences, said. “The students and teachers who participated in the academy are better able to understand the impact of technology on agriculture due to the support of AgriVision.”
The academy introduced students and agriculture educators to the ever-changing world of precision agriculture technologies while providing opportunities for partnership and networking with industry professionals. Northwest faculty and AgriVision staff lead the instruction as students explore the use of global positioning systems (GPS), auto-guidance technology, precision application, remote sensing, geographic information systems and data collection management.
Students are 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 participate.
This summer’s students hailed from throughout Missouri and included four from Iowa high schools in Shenandoah, Wayne and Harlan. Selected students and their high school educators attend the summer academy at no cost through scholarships awarded to cover their lodging, food, materials, supplies and tuition.
Northwest agricultural education majors Sage Bennett, Amanda Hampton, Kate Thornton and Katie Wantland also served as academy counselors.
AgriVision Equipment, a locally owned and operated company with 10 locations across southern Iowa, sponsors the summer academy. The initiative arose from a partnership Northwest and AgriVision Equipment formed in 2015 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 boasts one of the largest and most unique agricultural science programs in the Midwest, serving an average of 700 undergraduates and graduates annually. The School of Agricultural Sciences boasts an 84.1 percent retention rate compared to the national average of 68.7 percent, and 98.2 percent of its graduates are securing employment or advancing their education within six months of earning degrees.
Northwest students in ag science-related majors gain profession-based experience at the 448-acre Wright Farm, which is home to beef, swine, dairy and sheep enterprises as well as row and forage crops, such as corn, soybeans, small grains, hay, pasture and cover crops. Managed by professional agriculture specialists and faculty members, the farm provides a critical resource for hands-on, experiential learning. It also links the University with regional school districts to promote agricultural and food-system literacy.
To learn more about Northwest’s School of Agricultural Sciences, visit www.nwmissouri.edu/ag/.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
firstname.lastname@example.org | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900
Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468