The 2018 Superior Young Dairy Producer Award (SYDPA) program was held August 18, at the Illinois State Fair. Twenty 4-H dairy project members from across Illinois took part in the event. The purpose of the contest is to create an educational activity that promotes youth development, career development, and personal growth through increased knowledge of the dairy industry. This three-phase competition emphasizes the youth’s knowledge of the dairy industry. Carroll County 4-H member Rachel Scidmore from Chadwick placed in the “top three” in the first and second phase of the event which placed her in the “top three” overall.

Dr. Lisa Diaz, Director Illinois 4-H; Addison Raber, Gridley; Rachel Scidmore, Chadwick; Lane Heinzmann, Carlyle; Miss Illinois County Fair Queen, Samantha Hasselbring; and Dave Fischer, IL 4-H dairy program coordinator

The “top three” overall participants were awarded with a $1,000 scholarship. The $3,000 in scholarships was sponsored by Compeer Financial and awarded to: Rachel Scidmore, Chadwick, IL (Carroll County), Addison Raber, Gridley, IL (Livingston, County) and Lane Heinzmann, Carlyle, IL (Clinton County) Individual plaques, sponsored by Land of Lincoln Purebred Livestock Breeders Association and Illinois State Fair, were awarded to the “top 3” in each phase and the “top 3” overall winners.

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The first phase was a dairy management test relating to dairy nutrition, health, reproduction, milk marketing, and other dairy related information. The second phase was a three station skill-a-thon on various aspects of the dairy industry. Contestants had to identify dairy feeds, identify, understanding DHI information, and identify dairy equipment. The third phase of the Superior Young Dairy Producer Contest was a judging contest. The judging phase consisted of animal selection by placing four classes of dairy cows and two classes of heifers.

This year marked the 23rd consecutive year for the Superior Young Dairy Producer Award Program which has provided $111,000 in college scholarships to Illinois dairy youth since its inception. The program is developed and conducted by Dave Fischer, 4-H Extension Dairy Program Coordinator.

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