UW-River Falls places third at quadrathalon
April 23, 2009
UW-River Falls’ agricultural proficiency was demonstrated as the Academic Quadrathalon team took third place at a Midwest regional held in Ames and Des Moines, Iowa, where they competed against 14 other schools in mid March.
The team consisted of animal science students Mitchell Schaefer, Robert Krenz, Bobbi Wellnitz and Jennifer Bjorge. The quadrathalon is broken up into four different events all pertaining to animal agriculture: an oral presentation, a quiz bowl, a written examination and a lab examination.
The quiz bowl was like any other, in that teams answered questions against one another. For the oral presentation, teams had to put together a PowerPoint presentation on one of two current agriculture topics with relevant information.
The written examination had teams prepare an essay regarding an aspect on animal biology such as diet or genetics. Finally, the lab exam required hands-on work with animals as several lab stations were set up, each having different kinds of animals. All events had a time limit.
“The entire thing was a team effort, and every member brought a specific area of knowledge and experience, and we collaborated on the general details,” Bjorge said. The team was selected by having a local contest during the second week of February.
Individuals made groups of four as they saw fit and participated in events identical in format to the ones used in Iowa. The winning team was the one that went to the regional.
In between that time, aside from advice and pointers from team adviser Gary Onan, there was not a great deal of preparation, the team rather relying on what they had learned in class. “It was amazing how much information I recalled from classes I had my freshman year.
There wasn’t a whole lot of preparation for the competition, although I did look back at some of my old notes,” Bjorge said. While UWRF did not win the entire contest, there were optimistic viewpoints displayed by those involved.
Bjorge said she thoroughly enjoyed the competition and would encourage others to try and participate in it in the future. Onan said it is always good to see students excel academically in such competitions, especially when some of the opposition comes from larger schools.
At the competition held March 15 and 16, UWRF was up against schools from Midwest states such as Nebraska, Illinois, Missouri and others. While UWRF secured the third place spot, Kansas State and North Dakota State took the first and second position respectively.