UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State Collegiate Poultry Judging Team earned first place at the 55th National Collegiate Poultry Judging Contest held at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
The annual event consists of 15 classes over a two-day period. The contest involves poultry judging associated with table-egg quality, meat-carcass quality, breeder performance and breed characteristics. Penn State’s team has won this championship three times in the last six years.
The team is composed of Brooke Kline, Jonathan Nace, Rogen Shaffer and Morgan Watt. All four are seniors in the College of Agricultural Sciences majoring in animal science and minoring in poultry and avian science.
“This team was great to work with, and they were willing to put in the hard work necessary to be successful,” said Phillip Clauer, team coach, Poultry Science Club adviser and an associate teaching professor in the Department of Animal Science. “They all will be extremely successful in their future endeavors. Students on past judging teams have been sought out by employers after graduation.”
Three of Penn State’s team members placed in the top five overall individual performances. “They beat the next closest school by 110 points in the egg production and market egg division, which is a division usually decided by 15 to 30 points at best,” Clauer said.
The Penn State Poultry Judging Team is selected annually by competitive performance after taking “Animal Science 421” in the previous spring semester. The selected team members then are enrolled in “Animal Science 426” in the fall semester.
The college’s Office for Undergraduate Education provided partial funding for the team to participate in the event.
Clauer said there are abundant employment opportunities for students with the poultry and avian science minor and a multitude of opportunities available to students in the Department of Animal Science through student clubs and teams.