College clubs raise money for a variety of reasons and use different techniques. Some clubs focus on professional development and are tied to national chapters that have annual conferences. Others raise money to bring guest speakers to campus.
CSU Collegiate Stockgrowers club has two goals. The primary goal is to increase the students’ exposure to different aspects of the livestock industry. They also plan to send 10 members to San Antonio Texas for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association conference in February. This is more than just a trade show, it’s a chance for students to network with industry leaders, cattle related businesses, livestock producers, and attend the Cattlemen’s college.
The Taylor Beef Symposium held Saturday December 6 was one event that fulfilled both parts of the club’s goals. The symposium was named in honor of Bob Taylor a former member of the CSU animal sciences faculty who had a large impact on his students and producers throughout the commercial beef and seedstock industry.
The program included five speakers representing a wide swath of the industry including several of Dr. Taylor’s former students. Troy Marshall spoke about entrepreneurship in today's industry. Dr. Koontz from CSU's agricultural resource economics department shared the state of the beef industry in comparison to other segments of the meat production industry in the United States. Gary Teague talked about how diversity in your production can create synergy and gave specific examples from his businesses. Terry Fankhauser from Colorado Cattlemen’s Association lectured on current policies and upcoming comment periods on the Beef Check-off program would affect producers this year.
Many beef consumers may be surprised at the level of knowledge producers must possess to be successful in the market place; from understanding nutritional needs, vaccination and health issues, cost to benefit ratios, reading futures reports and planning ahead to reach peak market prices while keeping herd numbers in balance to meet consumer demand, and understand policy debates at the local, state, and national level. The CSU Collegiate Stockgrowers are working to expand members’ knowledge outside the classroom.