Saturday, March 18, 2017
Last Wednesday evening, on March 15, the Knox County Chapter of Purdue Ag Alumni held its spring meeting here at the farm shop. (It gave a good reason for a thorough cleaning and reorganizing of the shop. Thank you, John and Brandon!) The local chapter is one of the most active and engaged ag alumni groups in all of Indiana. Over the years, we have developed an endowed scholarship, in memory of Dr. William Treese, a much beloved Purdue agronomist stationed for many years by Purdue at Vincennes. The chapter is now working to establish a second scholarship, and that is nearly complete. We were able to award about $1400 to two deserving students last year.
The meeting was opened by Chapter President Drew Garretson. He introduced us as the hosts of the meeting, and Ross offered some comments about the farm and its history. We also recognized the oldest alum in the room, a graduate from Purdue Ag in 1960. It was nice to see recent grads, too.
This gathering was well attended, with 73 persons from Knox and Daviess Counties. The evening meal was sponsored by Grain Processing Corporation at Washington. The program featured John Dudenhoefer from GPC to inform the group about the how and why of their business. This sponsorship allowed all funds collected during the meeting to be dedicated toward the endowment development. There was also a raffle of some Purdue memorabilia to add to the funds.
Also in the crowd was the Executive Director of Purdue Ag Alumni, Donya Lester. With her inimitable style, she reported on progress in the College of Agriculture and its success. Purdue Agriculture was recently ranked 6th in the US and 8th in the world! We are so proud of that ranking! She also reported that the Department of Ag and Biological Sciences in the College has been awarded by the Indiana Legislature a new building on campus. Their facilities will become world-class, to match their department’s academic rating of #1 in the US, and #1 in the world! This new construction is quite a coup for Purdue Ag, because just last year, the legislature designated funds for a new Animal Sciences building, making two years in a row that Ag received the state construction funding for Purdue. It is significant that both the Purdue Trustees and the legislators recognize the value that Purdue Ag brings to not only the University, but also the State of Indiana.
As the meeting drew to a close, Donya led us all in singing “Hail, Purdue”.