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NBHS agriculture students raise and show livestock



Every year, agriculture students devote their time and effort in and out of class learning all the aspects of raising livestock for shows.


Students start their journey by choosing the type of animal they would like to raise, looking for prime features that show promise of a healthy and strong animal.


Months of commitment follows with students taking time out of their day to feed, groom, board and train their animals; constantly monitoring the progress of their investment.


“You always want to make sure they are on track,” said Danyella Longoria, a NBHS senior. “You want to always have an endpoint in mind”


Longoria, who has been showing pigs and steers for years, has racked up an impressive run of awards this school year including 1st place at the 2017 Dallas State Fair and multiple “High Point Winner” awards and top placements throughout the more recent 2018 shows.


The stock shows, ranging from smaller local events to world-class attractions like the San Antonio and Houston rodeos, are where all the months of hard work come could potentially pay off.


Students bring their animals to the larger shows in droves, a chaotic scene of endless trailers, scrambling family members and animals.


Once checked in, the students wait for their class to be called. They bring their animal to an open arena alongside other competing students. A judge examines everyone’s animal and also, to an extent, the students’ dress, attitude and demeanor.


Longoria said there are standards to judging livestock, and very specific attributes the judges are looking for, but they all approach judging differently.


“It all depends on how fast the judge is judging. Some classes he goes super fast and some others he goes super slow,” she said.


After a process of elimination, the final winners are chosen. Their animal stands a chance to make some considerable money at auction.


Beyond 4-H and FFA, the students are also prepped to raise livestock by their agriculture classes. The entire process is encouraged, taught and analyzed in various classes that teach them about raising animals, their anatomy and physiology as well judging their features and other aspects of the agriculture/food industry.


“Right now I’m in Advanced Animal Science,” said Longoria. “So it’s the cuts of meats, what makes a good animal (features), how much muscle you want on them, how much fat.”


Longoria sees a future for herself in the agriculture industry.


“This is for sure something I want to continue into college. I love animals and I love having something to do with Ag, so I’m thinking about an Ag business degree or maybe pursue being a vet,” she said.


Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources is a NBISD Career & Technical Education (CTE) occupational cluster for New Braunfels High School students. The pathway helps students interested in the field of study by preparing them for occupations and further study in higher education. To learn more about the CTE programs offered in NBISD, CLICK HERE.

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