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2016-2017 Officer Team

In the Spring of this past school year, the Agricultural Executive Council elected a new officer team. The officers met in September at an officer retreat to plan the fun and exciting upcoming year. The 2016-2017 officers for Oregon State University Agricultural Executive Council are as follows:

Trinity Shodin, President

Trinity Shodin, President

Ben Rietmann, VP

Ben Rietmann, Vice President

Monica Debord, Correspondence

Monica Debord, Director of Correspondence

August Peterson, Director of Finance

August Peterson, Director of Finance

Kayla Rushing, Director of Public Relations

Kayla Rushing, Director of Public Relations

Scott Jacobson, Director of Ag Days

Scott Jacobson, Director of Ag Days

Meg Marchand, Director of New Fields

Meg Marchand, Director of New Fields

Ag Days Recap: Oregon Without Borders

The Agricultural Executive Council hosted their largest event of the year, Ag Days, during the first week of May, Monday through Friday.

A Global Opportunities Poster Presentation was held Monday afternoon in Strand Agriculture Hall. Students presented about their experiences abroad at the poster session. The activities then continued with two workshops – one featuring Bill Moar, an entomology scientist from Monsanto, speaking about international agriculture and competitive markets and the second being a study abroad panel featuring Oregon State students.

Tuesday, the Ag Day in the Quad event was held in the MU Quad and SEC Plaza. Approximately 25 groups were there to represent their clubs, the College of Agricultural Sciences, and the College of Forestry. The OSU Young Cattlemen’s Association sold tri-tip sandwiches, and they were a crowd-pleaser! The booths were judged by the Ag Exec advisors and were ranked as follows: 1st place Forestry Club, 2nd place Sheep Club, and 3rd place Botany and Plant Pathology Club. Students were also given the chance to volunteer for Agriculture in the Classroom as part of a service project.

Wednesday evening, the Council partnered with the Oregon Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers & Ranchers to host the second annual Farm Bureau Discussion Meet. The event took place in the MU Lounge, and the six students that participated were asked to discuss the involvement of farmers and ranchers in government and natural resource issues. Andrew Miles took first place in the discussion meet, and Emily Hopfer took second.

Thursday night the Council hosted a keynote speaker, Dr. Reynold Gardner with the Oregon Department of Education. He spoke about the problems and opportunities facing agriculture today and the importance of education for the future.

Finally, Ag Olympics were held outside of Strand and the East side of the MU. Corn hole, ladder toss, and John Deere ‘tractor’ tricycle races were all offered as part of the fun! Ag Days is something the Agricultural Executive Council enjoys hosting every year, and it helps to provide education while people get the chance to see agriculture in action.


Oregon YF&R Farm Bureau Discussion Meet


Ag Day in the Quad

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Students participating in Ag Olympics

Agraland Industry Tour Recap

The second week of Spring Term, approximately 35 students and 2 advisers loaded onto a tour bus to explore agriculture in the Portland area. Also known as the “Agraland Tour,” students were able to tour a diverse set of tour stops including farms, a brewery, and a farmers market.

Friday morning, the tour group departed Corvallis and headed to Donald, Oregon to tour GK Machine Inc. The next stop for the group was Pacific Seafood, where they toured headquarters and a distribution center and were provided lunch by Northwest Farm Credit Services.  From there, the tour continued to the Food Innovation Center, an Agricultural Experiment Center located in Portland, Oregon. Students learned about the research conducted at the center and even got to do a food tasting of samples of Masala Pop’s handmade Indian-spiced popcorn! Following a tour of Charlie’s Produce, the group ended the day by touring the Clackamas Land Lab, learning about the operation, and having dinner provided by the North Clackamas FFA Chapter.

The Agraland tour group loaded the bus bright and early Saturday morning and headed to Stumptown Coffee to learn about the company’s practices. Coffee tasting helped everyone wake up! After working up an appetite, the group traveled to the Portland Farmers Market at Portland State University to eat lunch and explore the booths. The group then headed to Widmer Brothers Brewing to learn about the Craft Brew Alliance and the process of brewing. Cloud Cap Farms, a family farm part of Organic Valley, was the final stop for the day. The group then got pizza for dinner and settled in for the night.

Sunday morning started with a buzz as the group visited Bee Thinking, a beekeeping supplier based out of Portland, Oregon and company committed to education regarding honey bees. From there, the group traveled to Langdon Farms Golf Club to have lunch with Harvest Capital Company. Northwest Transplants,  a seedling production operation, was the last stop on the tour.

After the three day trip was concluded, student took a survey to help evaluate the trip and give suggestions for next year. The annual industry tour is one of the most looked forward to events. It helps students to connect with industry professionals and expose them to various careers. The Agricultural Executive Council makes events like the Agraland Industry Tour a priority, because of the great opportunities it provides students.

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Winter Term 2016 Recap

A view of the lively CAS Dance

The Agricultural Executive Council started off Winter Term by hosting the annual Etiquette Dinner. This event was open to any student involved in an Ag Exec club. Brian Field, President, and Royce Ann Simmons, Vice President, of Harvest Capital Company were our speakers for the evening. They gave a presentation on proper etiquette for professional dinners and demonstrated how to mingle during our “mocktail” reception. The Council looks forward to providing more professional development events to students in the future, as this event proved to be so beneficial!

Our annual Ethics Panel took place the next month. The panelists Dr. Mary Santelmann, Mr. Shaun McKinney, and Mr. Jerome Rosa did an exceptional job of discussing how ethics plays a role in the theme for the night, “Conservation vs Preservation.” They were able to draw from each of their individual professional experiences in answering questions posed by the audience concerning issues in the agricultural industry. The insight from the panelists was greatly appreciated by council members.

Shortly following the Ethics Panel, the officer team hosted the annual College of Agricultural Sciences Dance at the Women’s Building on campus. The Country Western Dance Club co-hosted the event and provided music and a fun atmosphere filled with dancing, and a spaghetti dinner was provided! Guests were asked to donate canned food or pay an entrance fee for the event, which made it possible for Agricultural Executive Council to donate over 500 dollars and a substantial amount of canned food to the Linn-Benton Food Share. Clubs had the opportunity to get creative and enter a centerpiece into a contest. Steer-A-Year Club took 1st place with PVMA Club following closely behind, and Agricultural Education Club taking 3rd.

Several guest speakers came to monthly council meetings to provide information upcoming events and opportunities. Council members were able to learn more about the Oregon Young Farmers and Ranchers Program, the Leadership Academy, open to all students in the Colleges of Agricultural Sciences and Forestry, and the Winter CAS Panel and Networking Event.

The Spring Industry Tour, also known as the Agriland Tour, will take place in Portland and the surrounding areas from April 8th-10th. Students will tour a variety of locations and have the opportunity to speak with leaders in several different areas of the agricultural industry. In early May, Ag Days with the theme of Oregon Beyond Borders will take place. Clubs in the College of Agricultural Sciences will be in the MU Quad and the SEC Plaza promoting their activities. There will be speakers and many other events taking place during the week as well. Come check out Ag Days to see some adorable animals and learn more about agriculture!


A group shot at Etiquette Dinner


Ethics Panel attendees


Council officers dropping off canned food from the CAS Dance.

Fall Term 2015 Recap

Officers greeting students at the Annual Fall Gelato Social

The Agricultural Executive Council had quite an eventful Fall Term to start out the new school year. The officer team began the term with a one-day retreat at Peavy Arboretum and worked to plan events for the year and to revise the Constitution while bonding as a team. We shared individual goals and came up with team ones, as well. Only a few days later, the College of Agricultural Sciences Fall Kick-Off Gelato Social took place at the newly renovated Strand Agriculture Hall’s front plaza. New and returning students were able to learn about all of the clubs in the College. It was the perfect sunny weather to enjoy some gelato from a local business!

The Ag Exec officers represented the College of Agricultural Sciences throughout football season by traveling to WSU for a tailgater, celebrating Homecoming and assisting with booths at the Oldfield Animal Teaching Facility during Dad’s Weekend. Oregon State pride was abundant, as we never miss a chance to attend a Beaver game! Connecting with alumni and donors is something we enjoy on all occasions while celebrating agriculture and the excitement of game day.

Members of the officer team attended the College of Agricultural Sciences Dean’s Dinner, held at the end of October, as well. Students assisted with setting up for the event and were seated at various tables to interact with faculty, alumni and industry leaders. We heard about scientific research and notable work in agriculture and watched recipients of the College of Agricultural Sciences awards receive those awards. These types of events are what make being a student in the College of Agricultural Sciences much more interesting and rewarding.

After an extensive two-year upgrade to Strand Agriculture Hall, which included significant seismic, accessibility, and energy upgrades, its reopening was celebrated at the end of October. The event began at the West Portico Entrance facing the MU Quad and highlighted the new building. Strand has housed several different departments, but its emphasis throughout its history has always been agriculture. After a short program to celebrate the reopening, in which Dean Dan Arp presented, members of the officer team gave tours of the building. The event allowed people to see the beautiful new space that is Strand Agriculture Hall and to explore agricultural sciences.

Members of the officer team went on an industry tour with the Ambassadors for Agriculture, Forestry, and Natural Resources. That afternoon we traveled a short distance south of Corvallis to visit a winery and a learn about practices at a biodynamic farm. We finished off the day with a visit to a U-Pick pumpkin and apple farm. This was an excellent way to become more familiar with each other and explore agricultural industries!

Keep an eye out for information on our annual events including Etiquette Dinner, the Spring Industry Tour occurring the second weekend of Spring Term, and Ag Days!

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The Organic Growers Club leading an activity at the Gelato Social


Part of the officer team at the College of Agricultural Sciences Dean’s Dinner

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Roasting marshmallows at Pfeiffer Vineyards


Meeting President Ray at the Strand Open House

Introduction to the Agricultural Executive Council

The Agricultural Executive Council is the College of Agricultural Sciences student government, of which the majority of clubs and organizations within CAS are members. The council is chosen by their peers and serves as a governing and promotional body for students and clubs within CAS. Ag Exec acts in cooperation with the College of Agricultural Sciences to advance public relations and improvements to the College.

As a student in the College of Agricultural Sciences you gain so much from participating in student clubs, activities and professional organizations. There are many opportunities to get engaged and to gain leadership skills. Numerous clubs and activities are offered based on your academic interest, but you can join any club regardless of major.  Many of the largest events held throughout the year are reserved for club members, so join and have fun while getting to be a part of these activities! The five largest events held by Ag Exec are listed below.

Etiquette Dinner gives members a great opportunity to learn how to behave at dinners in the professional world. The event includes a “mocktail” hour, dinner, and dessert, as well as a presentation given by leading professionals on how to act, dress and make conversation. This is an event anyone who wants to learn the rules of etiquette and be successful in world of business should attend!

At the Ethics Panel, held Winter Term, a group of industry leaders from various sectors discuss ethics in agriculture. The College of Agricultural Sciences Dance is also held Winter Term, and put on through collaboration by Ag Exec, Country Western Dance Club, and Meat Science Club. A pulled pork dinner has been served in the past with the entrance fee being only a can of food. Country Western Dance Club teaches attendees a dance and plays music all night long. This is a great study break and way to contribute to a local food bank.

Ag Days is a four day event held early May in conjunction with FFA CDE Days. The first day consists of a speaker giving a talk about issues in agriculture. Dr. William Moar from Monsanto discussed GMO technology last year. Day in the Quad, held the second day, gives clubs a chance to show the OSU community what they have accomplished during the year. A Discussion Meet is hosted by the Young Farmers and Ranchers the third day. On the fourth day, Betsy Hartley from the ER Jackman Committee gave clubs insight on what the committee was looking for in upcoming funding interviews.

Held Spring Term, the Industry Tour is the most anticipated event of the year. Last year, 40 students attended the Southwestern Agriculture Industry Tour and learned about several parts of the industry. The trip included visits to vineyards, a chocolate factory, beef operation and more! The tour is a fantastic way to learn more about agriculture in Oregon.

Speaking of getting involved, the College of Agricultural Sciences and the Agricultural Executive Council will be hosting a gelato social Wednesday, September 23rd from 1pm-3pm! Student clubs will have information about their various activities and how to join at the Strand Agriculture Hall west plaza area. Come meet faculty, staff and returning students while enjoying gelato and learn how to get more involved on campus!

2015 – 2016 New Officers

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The Agricultural Executive Council officer elections for the upcoming 2015-2016 year were held last week. As spring term winds down, the newly elected officers are already beginning planning for next year. Please welcome the new Agricultural Executive Council as follows:


President: Elaine Jordan

Vice President: Gabrielle Redhead

Director of Correspondence: Emily Hopfer

Director of Finance: Aundriea Mason

Director of Public Relations: Callahan Anderes

Director of Ag Day: Trinity Shodin

Director of New Fields: Bennett Wahl

Ag Days Recap

Every year, the Agricultural Executive Council hosts clubs in the MU Quad during their biggest event, Ag Day. This year, the officer team decided to extend the event into 4 days, holding different events Monday through Thursday.


Monday night, the Ag Exec Council hosted Dr. William Moar, a company representative and entomology scientist from Monsanto. He spoke to council members and local FFA Chapters about Genetically Modified Organisms and food safety. He discussed some myths associated with GMOs, and the benefits behind science in the agricultural industry.


Tuesday was the ‘Ag Day in the Quad’ event. During this event, we had over 25 clubs representing clubs within the College of Agricultural Sciences and the College of Forestry. For the most part, the event was held underneath the new plaza in between the MU and the Student Experience Center, sheltering most of the clubs from the rain. The Young Cattlemen’s Committee was selling tri-tip sandwiches, and ended up selling out around 1:00 PM. The turn out was far beyond expected. During the event, the Ag Exec advisors, Tommy and Josh, judged the booths and ranked them as follows: 1st Place, International Agriculture Club; 2nd Place, Poultry Science Club; and 3rd Place, Horticulture Club. The most Interactive Club award went to Collegiate FFA.


Wednesday evening, the Ag Exec Council hosted the first annual Agricultural Issues Discussion Meet, which was facilitated by the Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers. Students who had applied to compete in the event were set up on a stage in the MU Lounge, and prompted with questions regarding agriculture in today’s era. The first place winner of the discussion was Andrew Miles, and the second place winner was Gregory Christiansen.


Lastly, Thursday night was facilitated by Betsy Hartley as she lead a workshop on how to write a grant proposal. With ER Jackman funding interviews coming up, Betsy provided tips to clubs and provided them with materials for a successful interview and grant proposal. Although we had a smaller audience, over 20 clubs were represented at the event.


Ag Days is an event that the Agricultural Executive Council looks forward to putting on every year. With such high success rates this year, the council looks forward to maintaining the extended event days next year as well.

SWAG Industry Tour Recap

Earlier in the month of April, 41 students and 3 advisors loaded up into a tour bus to experience South Western Oregon Agriculture. Otherwise referred to as the “SWAG Tour”, students got to explore farms, ranches, businesses, and the beach.


The tour started in Corvallis on Friday morning, and then headed towards Winston, Oregon for the Wildlife Safari. From there, the group headed towards Jackson County for a refreshing lunch with Northwest Farm Credit Services. After our pit stop, the SWAG Tour continued to Central Point, where the group explored a family owned and operated cattle ranch. From there, the SWAG Tour satisfied their sweet tooth at Lillie Belle Farms Artisan Chocolates (with free samples!).


Later that afternoon, the group stopped at Del Rio Vineyards. After getting a tour of the vineyards, fermentation room, and storage cellars, the evening was concluded with a tri-tip dinner provided by Crater FFA. During dinner, the Crater FFA Advisors spoke to the students about the importance of connections. Connections are not only important to an Agricultural Educator, but also to industry leaders.


Saturday morning was started bright an early with a trip up to Willow Witt Ranch in Ashland, Oregon. Even though the weather didn’t cooperate as nicely as hoped for, the snow didn’t stop the tour bus. The group then headed back down the hill for another vineyard in Grants Pass, where students of age could taste the wine. The SAWG tour then continued across state lines to Smith River, CA, where the group got to learn about the production of Easter Lilly bulbs at Dahlstrom and Watt Bulb Farm. The SWAG Tour participants then settled in for the night in Brookings, and awaited the adventures of the final day of the tour.


Sunday morning was kicked off with a splash, as the group headed down for a stroll on the beach. After everyone had their beach fix, the group headed to a local blueberry farm that is known for their ‘U-Pick’ program. Students enjoyed being able to purchase frozen blueberries and then go out to the field to see the blueberry plants. From there, the SWAG Tour headed to Face Rock Creamery. Many cheese samples later, the tour was ended at Bandon Dunes Golf Course, where the group learned about turf and recreation management.


After spending 3 days on a tour bus and being able to see many different parts of the agricultural industry, students filled out a short survey to evaluate the trip. The Agricultural Executive Council found that 91% of the attendees felt better prepared for a job after college. The Agricultural Executive Council’s main goal was to better prepare students for entering the workforce after graduation, and providing an opportunity like the SWAG Industry Tour is one of the most successful events every year.