The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) held a luncheon Tuesday morning at the start of the 55th annual Farm Science Review to celebrate Ohio agriculture.
The event featured David Daniels, Director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture, Dr. Cathann Kress, Vice President for Agricultural Administration and Dean of the CFAES at OSU and Dr. Michael Drake, President of OSU as speakers. Among the guests in the audience were officials from Madison County OSU Extension and local and state representatives including Ohio Attorney General, Mike DeWine.
The CFAES is the nation’s largest university ag-bioscience research enterprise, making its contribution to Ohio agriculture immense. OSU and its agriculture extension offices help bridge the gap between agriculture science, business and education with working farms and farmers.
The luncheon served as a time for celebration and reflection on upcoming Ag-related news and business. David Daniels was first to address the crowd and stressed the importance of finishing the Farm Bill and securing effective infrastructure.
“One thing (Ohioans) need to always be thankful of is that we are 600 miles away from 60 percent of the people that use our products each and every day,” he said. “In order to keep that product moving in and out of our state, we need infrastructure.” Although Ohio recently received a D- on their infrastructure report card, Daniels said it can be partly attributed to some of the issues at the federal level.
“Continue to remind your congressmen and your senators on the federal level that we need their support,” he added.
Dr. Cathann Kress of OSU spoke of the success of the CFAES in its advancement of Ag technology and its dedication to the pursuit of agricultural growth and stability.
“(Our scientists) are able to do a number of these wonderful things because of our partnerships,” Dr. Kress said. CFAES partners with the Department of Animal Sciences and of Veterinary Medicine to ensure the highest quality care with regard to livestock. The college recognizes that a successful Ag program isn’t just vital to the success of students and farmers, but to the environment beyond.
“Our real strength is our mission,” said Dr. Kress. “We sustain life.”
OSU’s president, Dr. Michael Drake, concluded the event by encouraging the audience about the growth and success of the CFAES as well as the university overall. Dr. Drake is the 15th president of OSU and has attended Farm Science Review for the last four years.
“We have a variety of schools that do a variety of things that are very, very important to us,” he said. “One of the best things about CFAES is that it really connects us to the whole state.” There are nine research stations around the state and OSU extension programs are located in all 88 counties.
The CFAES also brings in 183,000 Ohio 4-H participants along with another 22,000 adult and teen 4-H volunteers. From 2016 to 2017, CFAES awarded its students with $2.2 million in scholarships. Ag students also went on to have a 92 percent success rate in employment or graduate school acceptance within six months of graduation.
“This last fall, we’ve received a record of over 52,000 applications,” Dr. Drake said. “It’s a really, really exciting time to be a buckeye.”
Farm Science Review, held at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center, 135 State Route 38 NE in London, runs Sept. 19-21. Tickets are $10 at the gate.
Reach Michael Williamson at 740-852-1616, ext. 1619.