Little “I” a-comin’

Jill Fier

Jill Fier

South Dakota State University will host the 80th Little International this Friday and Saturday.

The annual agricultural exposition is the largest student-run event of its kind in the nation.

Over 2,000 area Future Farmers of America and 4-H members participate in the events each year..

This year 104 volunteer undergraduate students worked for months to put together an exposition that will help both high school and college students prepare for their future, Little “I” Manager Travis Hoffman said.

“The two-day event enables students to enhance career building and leadership skills and aids in developing men and women who will prove to be the leaders in tomorrow’s agricultural industry,” he said.

“The greatest benefit is being able to prove some of your skills, taking pride in the fitting and exhibiting of livestock.”

Nearly 200 college students will participate in contests throughout the day and evening of the exposition.

These events include showmanship and fitting competitions of swine, beef, dairy cattle, horse and sheep.

There will also be novice competitions.

Hoffman said that students drew in February for the animals they will show in the competition, to make the selections as fair as possible.

High school students will compete in various judging contests.

In a number of the events, students will compete for $250 scholarships for seniors planning to attend SDSU next year.

High points awards will also be given to college students who have gain the most points throughout the events.

One will be given to a freshman, and the other to an upperclassmen.

Former SDSU graduates will judge many of the events will be judging the events.

All evening events will start at 6 p.m. in the Animal Science Arena and are free and open to the public.