Nebraska Crops Team takes third at Kansas contest

by Lana Johnson | Agronomy and Horticulture

2022 Crops Judging Team
2022 Crops Judging Team members include Sarina Janssen (front row, from left), Katie Steffen, Kailey Ziegler, and Maggie Walker, and Dan Frey (back row, from left), Will Stalder, Korbin Kudera and Nathan Donoghue.
March 18, 2022

Lincoln, Neb. —The University of Nebraska–Lincoln Crops Judging Team earned a third-place overall team award at the Kansas State University Crop Judging Contest March 5 in the four-year division. Ten teams from Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas participated in the contest.

Nebraska's winning team includes senior agronomy majors Nathan Donoghue, Katie Steffen, Korbin Kudera and Sarina Janssen.

Kudera placed first overall individual with a score 26 points higher than any other team contestant.

“I enjoyed traveling with our Crops Judging Team to the contest because it gave me a chance to see our team at work in a setting which challenged them to apply their knowledge and skills to relevant, diverse crop production situations,” said Don Lee, professor of agronomy and horticulture. “I learned that our student's ability to compete in this contest was a reflection of both their work with Jared and the learning they gained over the years from all of our faculty who deliver our curriculum.”

Designed to prepare students for a future career in agronomy, the crops judging contest includes four segments. These include an agronomic exam, a math exam, a plant and seed identification exam, and a lab practical. The agronomic exam covers general agronomic knowledge of new and past political and agronomic products and innovations. The math exam covers mathematical problems related to agronomy. The lab practical includes questions on various agronomy related disciplines such as weed science, entomology and plant pathology. The plant and seed identification exam tests knowledge of 140 crops and weeds species.

“The team did very well at K-state, they are always eager to learn and I am excited to see how they will do at Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture,” said Jared Stander, team coach and instructor for the crops judging course.

The team will compete March 31 at the NCTA Collegiate Crops Contest in North Platte.

For more information about Nebraska’s Crops Judging Team see https://agronomy.unl.edu/crops-judging-team.

University of Nebraska–Lincoln Crops Judging Team
Jared Stander, coach (blue shirt) instructs team before the start of the contest. Students include Korbin Kudera, from left, Sarina Janssen, Will Stalder, Nathan Donoghue, Maggie Walker, Katie Steffen, Kailey Ziegler, and Dan Frey.
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Crops Judging Team
Kailey Ziegler works on the lab practical which includes questions on various agronomy related disciplines such as weed science, entomology and plant pathology.
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Crops Judging Team
Maggie Walker identifies common lambs quarters in the plant and seed identification exam which tests student’s knowledge of 140 crops and weeds species.
University of Nebraska–Lincoln Crops Judging Team
Will Stalder working on a question about the similar functions for the plants used in agriculture.