Brookings, S.D. – The South Dakota State University College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences (CAFES) Prexy Council has named Swine Club the 2023 Club of the Year. Each year, a committee organized by Prexy Council selects an organization that makes a positive impact on the SDSU campus and exceeds expectations in supporting its members and contributing to the community.
With over 60 dues-paying members, the SDSU Swine Club has continued to grow exponentially over the past few years. Like many other student groups on campus, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the club suffered a decline in membership after students returned to campus in the fall of 2020. Since then, Swine Club’s leadership team has been working together to connect with other students while actively growing their membership roster.
The SDSU Swine Club’s mission is to create an interactive learning environment for all students, regardless of their swine background, that allows them to learn about different components within the swine industry. Throughout the academic year, the club has hosted industry speakers including local producers and companies such as New Fashion Pork and JBS. In January, the leadership team hosted Brett Kaysen, National Pork Board Senior Vice President of Producer and State Engagement.
In addition to industry speakers, Swine Club actively works with the South Dakota Pork Producers Council by sending members to help serve food at the South Dakota Pork Producers’ food booth and advocate for the swine industry at the information booth at the South Dakota State Fair. The club has also put together goodie bags with informational booklets, swine-themed crafts and more for youth organizations like the Brookings Youth Mentoring Program and the Ronald McDonald House in Sioux Falls. In fall 2022, Swine Club, in collaboration with Faith Reformed Church, made and served a meal for over 125 members of the Brookings community through the Harvest Table initiative at the Brookings United Methodist Church.
Over the past year, Swine Club implemented a new points system that not only rewards its members but also encourages them to be active at both the club and campus levels. Members can receive points by volunteering to help with club activities such as putting goodie bags together, attending events, tours, conferences, and volunteering at CAFES events on behalf of Swine Club. Rewards range from discounts on dues, apparel, or potential club field trips.
“Swine club has opened many doors to its members with the activities, speakers and service they have done this year,” said freshman animal science and agriculture communications student and Swine Club member Brynn Lozinski. “As a member that is using these opportunities to their advantage, I feel that I have grown to understand more than just the traditional way of raising pigs, but also more ways to be involved in the swine industry from advocating to research and niche markets to nutrition.”