Straight from High School to Dairy Science
For Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) Dairy Science student Thomas Allen, a native of Reedsburg, Wis., making the daily 100-mile commute to Calmar, Iowa, just comes with the territory and is worth the sacrifice.
Thomas is an ambitious dairy farmer and first-year NICC student who is continuing his studies at Iowa’s Dairy Center, located near the College’s Calmar campus. He says the NICC program and the unique dairy facility offer an opportunity to directly apply what he is learning to his own operation.
“I really like the Dairy Science program at NICC, and what I’m learning impacts my own future as a successful farmer,” Thomas explained. “You can see the cows at the dairy center from the classroom windows! I’m really enjoying the program and the experience that Iowa’s Dairy Center gives students. It’s great.”
Thomas’ accomplishments in the dairy world are earning recognition. He won the 2012 National Future Farmers of America (FFA) Dairy Entrepreneurship Award last October and was featured in the January 2013 edition of Hoard’s Dairyman, a national dairy magazine which highlighted Thomas in its Young Dairymen section.
“I have a really great group of teachers. Dave Lawstuen, Dr. Christopher Harvey, D.V.M., and Nate Gebel have all been great providing a hands-on approach at the dairy center,” Thomas adds.
After graduating from NICC, Thomas is looking to transfer to University of Wisconsin-River Falls or Iowa State University
to earn a four-year degree in