UW-Platteville team fares well at Academic Quadrathlon Contest quiz bowl

April 2, 2013

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Members of the quiz bowl team included (left-right): Sam Richison, Nicole Petrie, Stephanie Nagel and Peter Woehlck.


PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — The University of Wisconsin-Platteville team fared well in the quiz bowl portion of the 2013 regional Academic Quadrathlon Contest in Des Moines, Iowa. The event was held in conjunction with the Midwestern American Society of Animal Science and American Dairy Science Association meeting.

The contest is a four-part competition that includes a written exam, an oral presentation, a lab practicum and a quiz bowl. This year, 16 university teams from the Midwestern region participated.

A second-place finish for the UW-Platteville team in the quiz bowl portion of the contest was the best in its history. The UW-Platteville team bested Iowa State, North Dakota and South Dakota before falling to Ohio State. Results from the other three portions of the contest are still pending.

“What the students were able to do was phenomenal,” said Dr. John Tembei, professor of animal science at UW-Platteville and team advisor. “The AQ contest encourages students to develop abilities for teamwork in problem solving. Through Academic Quadrathlon contests every year, students in the School of Agriculture here at UW-Platteville are able to meet and interact with students in the same area of studies from UW-Madison and also have the opportunity to visit the different animal science facilities on both campuses.”

Students involved in the contest are attracted from all majors in the School of Agriculture, but those with the most interest come from pools of students currently enrolled in or who have taken some animal science courses. Members of this year’s team included Sam Richison, a senior agriculture education major from Belgium, Wis.; Nicole Petrie, a senior animal science major from Kiel, Wis., Stephanie Nagel, a senior animal science major from Valders, Wis.; and Peter Woehlck a senior animal science major from Waukesha, Wis.

Richison has participated in the Academic Quadrathalon on the local level since he was a freshman, and he has always enjoyed it. “The competition is a great way to not only exhibit my knowledge in the area of animal science, but also a great opportunity for further education,” he said. “Going to the Midwest competition this year was an amazing opportunity to meet other students and professors from the region and learn more about current research projects taking place around the country. Furthermore, being able to take second place in the quiz bowl was a great accomplishment, of which, our team is very proud.”

The written exam, oral presentation and lab practicum call for teamwork skills to complete, but the quiz bowl team members buzz in on an individual basis to answer questions. Questions asked during the quiz-bowl cover all aspects of animal science and the animal industry. The teams have faculty advisors, but they are not coached in anyway with regards to the content of the four parts of the contest.

“It really was a good learning experience,” said Nagel. “Each team member brought their own expertise to the team, and that is what made us a competitive force for the Des Moines contest.”

“The competition was a lot of fun, but I want to get more students involved in the AQ contest,” said Woehlck. “The lectures on new and upcoming research were very interesting.”

Practice competitions to prepare for the Midwestern regional contest are conducted between teams from UW-Madison and UW-Platteville early in February each year at the UW-Madison campus. The two best teams from UW-Madison and UW-Platteville advance to Des Moines.

“This was an excellent opportunity for students in animal science to get hands-on experience, put knowledge to use, and meet new contacts in the industry,” said Petrie. “Furthermore, while at the Midwest American Science meetings we had the opportunity to listen to graduate students present their findings on their research projects. From listening to the presentations I was able to think about my future plans for graduate school and am currently looking into options after I get my degree from UW-Platteville.”

The UW-Platteville School of Agriculture and GROWMARK sponsored the team’s trip to Des Moines.

“I strongly suggest that any students with a strong appreciation for animal science consider taking part in this competition in the future,” said Richison.

Contact: Dr. John Tembei, animal science professor, (608) 342-1063, tembeij@uwplatt.edu

Written by: Dan Wackershauser, UW-Platteville University Information and Communications, (608) 342-1194, wackersd@uwplatt.edu

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