Oct. 11 2021 08:00 AM

Students share their promotion abilities in a fun contest focused on advocacy through social media.

The national dairy checkoff has sponsored College Aggies Online for several years, and I'm always impressed at how creative and driven the students are to learn and advocate for animal agriculture. If you don't know anything about the college scholarship program, it's an initiative from the Animal Agriculture Alliance.

As part of the program, participants receive nine interactive and educational weeks of content to help them become confident and effective communicators for agriculture with guidance from industry and farmer mentors. Then they test these skills by communicating and engaging with consumers via social media channels such as Tik Tok, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.

I've been a mentor for the program for the past five years, and this year's students did a fantastic job of being creative and interesting to get people's attention and then sharing some facts on dairy cows, dairy farming and/or dairy in general. Please check out some of the winning submissions and the hashtags #CAO21 and #undeniablydairy to view all of them on your favorite platform.

A big thank you goes to Becca Hilby at farmingwiththehilbys. She is my cohort and farmer mentor to the students.

If you are a college student or know someone who would be interested in the College Aggies Online scholarship program, visit animalagalliance.org and join in the fun.

To learn more about your national and local dairy checkoffs, visit www.USDairy.com or send a request to join our Dairy Checkoff Facebook group.

Don Schindler

The author is a Senior Vice President of Digital Initiatives at Dairy Management Inc.