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Until We Meet Again…

I cannot believe where the summer has gone. Today is officially the last day of my summer internship with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Cortland County and in less than a week I will be sitting in class at Cornell. I have had the opportunity to do so much this summer in all different areas. Whether it was with dairy cows, corn plants or teaching youth around the county in various different settings, it all flew by so quick! I’ve been busy right up to the very end so I’ll share the last couple of weeks with you!

As many people know about, Empire Farm Days took place last week in Seneca Falls. This was only my second time attending, it was something my family never did as I was growing up. It is really awesome to see all of the people attending. Whether they were vendors promoting their specialty in the industry or a business bringing their merchandise, everyone is connected by one thing: agriculture. What some attendees don’t realize, is that Empire Farm Days can greatly benefit the youth involved in agriculture, as well. On Thursday, FFA and 4-H members can compete in different events, one being the Tractor Safety Contest, which I was involved in. In order to be able to, they must have already completed their tractor safety course. Between FFA and 4-H, there were over 20 students who participated. They take a written test, do a tool identification part, and have to drive two different courses, a two-wheel and a four-wheel driving test. Points are deducted for things like speed, not wearing their seatbelt, hitting barriers and distance from where they are supposed to park it after completion. It is really great to see all of the participants and how knowledgeable some are about the safety and driving skills.

This past week, Betsy and I finished at our last tiestall for the tiestall lameness research study that we have been doing and I have been constantly talking about all summer. Next, all of the data will be compiled and she is hoping for results and final conclusions to be available in the fall. I am really curious as to what the findings end up to be and am hoping I get to see them even though I will be deep into my coursework throughout the semester! The tiestall study was one of my favorite things that I was involved with this summer, probably because dairy cows are my favorite thing and really my only hobby! In the picture, I am measuring the height of the cow. I measured the height and width of every cow that was involved in the study to see if there was any correlation of lameness and size. It will be interesting to find out if there was or not!

Another neat thing that the South Central Dairy and Field Crops team does is send out a couple of digest newsletters throughout the summer to agriculturists in the areas that they cover. The digest includes articles written by members of the team, as well as other scholarly articles about whatever is a hot topic. This particular digest includes articles about different things like heat stress in dairy cows, corn harvest because the weather has been so crazy, as well as common pests found in field crops throughout the region this summer. I have attached the link below for those interested in reading the digest. Check out the article I got to write about the robot farm tour!

As my summer internship comes to an end, I am very thankful that I was able to intern at the Cooperative Extension office in Cortland with the 4-H department and the South Central Dairy and Field Crops team. It allowed me the diversity I was looking for, while still being connected to agriculture in all of the different departments. I learned a lot and had a lot of fun while doing so. This is a summer I will definitely not forget!

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