Michigan Dairy Ambassador Program Launches New Format Applications for the 2018 Calendar Year Due Jan. 13

The Michigan Dairy Ambassador Program Team is excited to launch a new format that will award the scholarships based on participation in dairy promotion outreach, industry events, and an interview with dairy industry judges.

Michigan high school and college students interested in pursuing a career in the dairy industry have until Jan. 13 to apply for the 2018 Michigan Dairy Ambassador Scholarship and Leadership Program.

All applicants should plan to attend a day-long leadership training on Feb.9, the second day of the Great Lakes Regional Dairy Conference (GLRDC). All attendees will be considered 2018 Michigan Dairy Ambassadors, will represent Michigan dairy farm families, and will be equipped with the messaging and practice to effectively communicate with consumers in-person and online.

Participation throughout the year in communication and leadership trainings, dairy events and promotion activities will earn points with the opportunity to advance to the interview round. Application, resume, participation throughout the year in dairy promotion activities, and the interview will be considered for scholarship recipient selections. Two Dairy Ambassador scholarships will be awarded, one to a junior winner and another to a senior winner.

The senior division is reserved for college students up to age 22, with the winner receiving a $1,500 scholarship. The junior division is limited to high school students in grades nine to 12, and the winner receives $1,000 that can be applied toward higher education or the purchase of a dairy animal within the upcoming year. Applicants are not required to have a dairy farm background, but they must plan to pursue a career related to the dairy industry. The scholarship program is funded through a benefit auction held at the annual Great Lakes Regional Dairy Conference (GLRDC).

Currently, Lindsay Larsen of Scottsville, is serving as the 2016 senior Michigan dairy ambassador representative. Jessie Nash of Elsie is the junior Michigan dairy ambassador representative.

Students interested in applying for the 2018 Michigan Dairy Ambassador Scholarship and Leadership Program can download an application from grldc.org or contact Megghan Honke Seidel at 989-666-3773. Applications must be submitted electronically to 1glrdc@gmail.com and will be accepted until Jan. 13. Any questions about the Michigan Dairy Ambassador Program please contact Jessica Welch at 248-474-6672, ext. 303 or jwelch@mimilk.com.

This year’s event will take place in Mount Pleasant, Michigan on February 8-10, 2018. For the conference schedule and registration information, visit glrdc.org or contact Megghan Honke Seidel.

GLRDC Joins PDPW Dairy AdanvCE to Offer CE’s to producers and industry representatives

Dairy AdvanCE Emerges as Go-To Resource for Professional Development in Dairy

More than 2,500 CE Credit-Hours Secured Since Online Management Tool Launched in March 2017


DAIRY NEWS – Dairy AdvanCE™, created by Professional Dairy Producers® (PDPW), has emerged as the nation’s go-to-resource for finding, tracking and reporting continuing education in dairy.  Dairy farmers, farm employees, allied industry and college students are using this online continuing education (CE) management tool to demonstrate and prove their dedication to continuous improvement and lifelong learning.


Dairy professionals can readily access a listing of vetted trainings to further advance their personal and professional skill-sets.  Topic areas include financial, business, food safety and quality, animal care, agronomy, human resources, leadership, environmental stewardship, communications and beyond.


The idea of an online resource to find top-quality training and education offerings on one website is spot on,” said Darci Daniels, dairy farmer and owner of Garden Valley Genetics, Hixton, Wis.  “I can search for specific trainings or discover programs that I didn’t even know existed – and right from my phone.  I can also see how those that market and provide services to dairy farmers could benefit from Dairy AdvanCE.  Knowing that the industry person I am dealing with has a qualified base of knowledge, means better use of our time and more productive conversations about our farm.”


Dairy AdvanCE was introduced by Professional Dairy Producers – PDPW in March at the 2017 PDPW Business Conference in Madison, Wis., and has been widely adopted throughout the industry, with more than 300 active users from 24 states and reporting more than 2,500 CE credit-hours through 40+ executed accredited trainings.


At DairyAdvance.org, dairy professionals can find vetted, high-quality trainings from nine leading-edge founding educational providers, including:

  • 4 State Dairy Extension Group
  • Cornell University Dairy Management and PRO-DAIRY
  • Great Lakes Regional Dairy Conference
  • Indiana Dairy Producers
  • National Mastitis Council
  • Professional Dairy Producers – PDPW
  • The Executive Program for Agricultural Producers (TEPAP)
  • University of Wisconsin Discovery Farms
  • Vita Plus

“From its inception, the goal of The Executive Program for Agricultural Producers (TEPAP) has been to help farms and agribusinesses become more professional in their management practices,” said Dr. J. Mark Welch, Associate Professor and Extension Economist at Texas A&M.  “We appreciate the opportunity to partner with Dairy AdvanCE, an organization whose aim it is to promote continuing education resources for the dairy industry.  Dairy AdvanCE makes it easier for producers to find targeted trainings that match their personal and professional needs and TEPAP is proud to be recognized as one of those educational opportunities.”


The online resource provides farmers and their on-farm team members the ability to easily track their CE credits and advancement toward their professional development goals. Users can also report their individual CE transcripts to officially demonstrate their commitment to continuous improvement to their employers, lenders, community boards, agents, and beyond, as needed, and at any time right from their mobile device or desktop computer.


“As a dairy owner, we make training a priority on our farm. Dairy AdvanCE helps us easily find the training we need, whether it is an online training video on standard operating procedure (SOP) we watch as a whole team or at an in-person event we attend off the farm,” said Steve Maddox, dairy farmer and owner of Maddox Dairy in Riverdale, Cali.  “The idea that our managers and employees can track their education in a transcript is useful to them and us.  It also helps in our hiring process to better assess a potential employee’s skill set and how to build on it.


While PDPW developed Dairy AdvanCE for farmers, anyone in the dairy industry can subscribe. This includes allied industry professionals such as veterinarians, nutritionists, technicians, field and sales representatives, as well as food system, legal and public service professionals.


“In order to serve our dairy farm customers, our team needs to stay on top of the latest research and management practices,” said Floyd Sutton, Key Account Manager, Zinpro Performance Minerals from of Freeport, Illinois.  “Dairy AdvanCE is a simple way to ensure our employees are continuing to access trainings and build their knowledge-base with high-quality, leading-edge production, communication and leadership focused educational programming.”


Dairy AdvanCE is free for dairy farmer owners, farm managers and on-farm team members. For all others, there is a $50 annual subscription fee. To learn more or subscribe to Dairy AdvanCE visit www.dairyadvance.org, email mail@dairyadvance.org, or call 800-947-7379.


Professional Dairy Producers (PDPW) is dairy’s professional organization. As the nation’s largest dairy producer-led, grassroots organization of its kind, it focuses on education, networking and professional development to share ideas, solutions, resources and experiences that help dairy producers succeed.

2018 Sponsorship Opportunities Available

The Great Lakes Regional Dairy Conference (GLRDC) will be celebrating its sixteenth year in 2018 and we want you to be a part of it. Since its inception in 2002, the GLRDC has grown from a small meeting to a large producer-based and driven conference that attracts more than 350 dairy producers from across the state of Michigan and throughout the Midwest. The conference was developed by producers and dairy industry representatives for producers, and its founders and planning members continue to be committed to building a program packed with useful and timely information from a variety of high-quality speakers.  Thanks to our sponsors, the GLRDC has been able to continually expand its offerings while remaining true to its dairy-inspired theme: learning and profiting together.

We’re inviting you to be a part of our continued growth by becoming a sponsor of the 2018 GLRDC. This is a key opportunity to position your name in front of the state’s dairy producers.  GLRDC continues to draw a variety of producers from large to small and tends to draw many producers in the 18-36 age range. These producers are the ones you want to get to know!

The 2018 GLRDC will be held Feb. 8-10 at the Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. The conference will feature David Kohl who will give producers insight on the industry. It will also feature a panel of producers from across the country who are taking innovative approaches to manage the low price of milk, Dr. Peter Hansen from University of Florida will talk latest in Genomics followed by a panel of producers, Dr. Katie Proudfoot from Ohio State University will focus on behavior and health in transition cows. Experts will also share insights on LPC’s and marketing milk and milk supply strategies. The conference will also feature workshops on lean and continuous management as a management strategy on farms, knowing the laws around labor management and a robotic system producer panel. Also don’t forget GLRDC will feature the 11th annual Michigan Dairy Industry Recognition Night.

You will also have the opportunity to support the Dairy Ambassador Program through your sponsorship process. The program offers high school and college students across the state leadership and learning experiences are customized to meet the specific goals of the ambassadors. The program offers all applicants specialized training to serve as dairy ambassadors throughout the year at various community and state-wide events. Your support will go a long way to supporting these youth and we ask you to consider adding this to your sponsorship portfolio this year.

If you have questions, please contact me at (616) 293-3189. You may also contact Megghan Honke Seidel at 1glrdc@gmail.com  or (989) 666-3773. To learn more about sponsorship or register for your sponsorship go to: www.glrdc.org

Thank you in advance for your continued support of the Michigan dairy industry! We look forward to seeing you in February.