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Collegiate Cattle Growers and Livestock Judging
Dan Kiesling serves as lecturer in the Department of Animal Sciences and has been a member of the department for more than two years. Kiesling’s responsibilities include teaching courses in livestock production, live animal and carcass evaluation, serving as an academic advisor and Livestock Judging Team coach. During his time in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Kiesling has started a course that teaches students the basics of livestock management regarding the four meat animal species and has worked with other faculty members to bring a teaching farm back to the animal sciences department so that students can have true hands-on experiences in the courses they take. Kiesling also advises the Collegiate Cattle Growers Association, a club that brings together students with an interest in the livestock industry, especially cattle.
Kiesling always knew he would be involved in the livestock industry—even as a youth. He grew up in Michigan on a small family farm showing and raising sheep, hogs and steers and developed a strong interest in animal agriculture while participating in 4-H and FFA. He graduated from Michigan State University with a bachelor’s degree in animal science and competed on both the intercollegiate meats and livestock judging teams. After working in the industry for a few years, he went back to school at Iowa State University to manage the sheep teaching farm and earned his master’s degree in animal science focusing on feedlot cattle nutrition.
The different duties he has within his job allow Kiesling to work with students, stakeholders and members of the community. As judging coach, he has been able to conduct workshops for 4-H and FFA students, judge county fairs and travel with members of the team. Livestock judging teaches students more than livestock evaluation. They are able to develop critical thinking, decision making and oral communication skills. These are critical skills that employers look for when hiring. Team members also are able to see production agriculture in other parts of the country and compare it to the production techniques used here in Arizona.
“I was able to study under and work with many talented faculty and staff who were great scientists and realized the value of students having learning experiences in the classroom and in the field,” commented Kiesling. His goal is to provide students with the foundation of using practical experience and understanding the science behind; these skills will allow them to be successful in their future careers.
“Whether the skills they attain are at the teaching farm, in the classroom or on the judging team, it is my goal to prepare these students to be successful in whatever career they pursue,” Kiesling remarked. He hopes that by providing an array of learning experiences, students are able to further their knowledge and deepen their passion for animal agriculture.
Date released:Mar 26 2013