HARRISBURG, Pa. — High school students are invited to learn about multiple career opportunities in the dairy industry during the annual Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow Farm Tour. Offered both in-person and virtually on Thursday, October 20, 2022 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the free, day-long event gives high school students a firsthand look at Pennsylvania dairy farms and exposure to different careers available within the dairy industry. Students will meet farmers, veterinarians, professors and industry professionals from two dairy farms and one veterinary center in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Space is limited to 60 students on a first-come, first-served basis for the in-person tour.
“This year’s farm tour is a great way for high school students who enjoy agriculture to learn more about relevant dairy careers in the dairy industry, including rewarding on-farm careers and opportunities in veterinary science,” said Michelle Shearer, Workforce Development Manager at the Dairy Excellence Foundation. “Whether you are looking for an experiential learning opportunity outside the classroom, or an engaging educational experience to watch from the classroom or at home, high school students will get a firsthand look at the wide range of careers in the Pennsylvania dairy industry.”
One of the stops on the tour will be Marshak Dairy, a dairy farm in Chester County with approximately 180 cows. It is part of the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Vet facility. The farm’s greenhouse design uses natural lighting and excellent ventilation within the barn to promote a healthy environment for the cows. Water from its manure storage facility is also used for fertilization and irrigation to ensure nutrients are recycled as efficiently as possible. Students will tour the farm and learn about these efforts in environmental stewardship and sustainability.
Walmoore Holsteins, a 1,000+ cow dairy operation in Chester County, is another stop on the tour. Walt Moore, a fourth-generation dairy farmer and owner of the farm, will provide a tour and give students the opportunity to explore careers in dairy herd management, hoof trimming, milk truck driving, and more.
Students will also visit the New Bolton Center in Chester County for lunch and a tour of the 700-acre veterinary hospital. The New Bolton Center has one of the largest caseloads of any academic large animal hospital in the nation. Students will learn about careers in veterinary science and research projects happening at New Bolton Center related to dairy.
“This is an interactive way for students to see how these modern dairy farms in Chester County operate and speak directly with dairy professionals who have extensive experience,” Shearer added. “Our tour of the New Bolton Center will also help connect the farm to the classroom and show how veterinarians and dairy farmers work together to care for their animals. Students will have a chance to ask questions directly to our speakers throughout the tour.”
Students and teachers must register for the in-person Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow Farm Tour by October 1. Transportation will be provided, and locations for bus pick-up will be finalized at the end of registration. To register for the in-person or virtual tour, visit www.dairyleadersoftomorrow.com/farm-tour. The Farm Tour is funded by the Dairy Excellence Foundation.
For more information, email Michelle Shearer at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 570-768-8316 with questions.
Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow is a curriculum designed specifically to prepare high school students to work in the dairy industry. Managed by the Dairy Excellence Foundation, the program provides dairy business and herd management courses to high school educators and students interested in a dairy production career.
–Emily Barge, Center for Dairy Excellence