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Two GCCC students selected to represent United States in Australian meats judging contest in July

Alan Car, Skyler Glenn, Dr. Clint Alexander
Left to right: Alan Caro, Skyler Glenn, Dr. Clint Alexander

Two Garden City Community College Meats Judging program students, along with their coach, have been selected to represent the United States in the Australian International Meat Conference and Contest this July in Wagga Wagga.

Skyler Glenn, Holcomb, and Alan Caro, Satanta, along with two students and their coach from Clarendon College in Clarendon, TX, were tapped for this honor as they both earned First Team All-American status during the 2013 meat judging year. All-Americans are selected by the American Meat Science Association at the end of a judging year. Team coaches are GCCC’s Dr. Clint Alexander and Clarendon’s Tate Corliss.

“The criteria for this selection are pretty rigorous and 25 percent of the overall score is based on the student’s grade point average (GPA)," said Dr. Clint Alexander, GCCC professor and meat judging team coach. “The other 75 percent relies on their judging performance during the year and Skyler and Alan are the most outstanding in the classroom and in the cooler.”

The GCCC students and coach will need to raise $18,000 to cover travel and expenses to the conference/competition. During the conference portion in Australia, attendees will be taken on tours of agricultural and animal science industries as well as be part of a three-day seminar where they will learn about Australian agriculture and its meat grading standards. After completion of the conference, the team will practice then compete in the World Championship Contest with all-star teams from around the world.

“The venue includes industry speakers, exposure to career fair-type events, a close look at the Australian beef industry including tours of feedyards, cow-calf operations, and their version of meatpacking facilities,” said Alexander. “Since the United States ranks fourth in beef exports behind Brazil, India, and Australia, the students will be able to interact with industry representatives from those countries as well as Japan and China, as well as industry partners such as Cargill and JBS, which is the largest multinational food company in the world. It’s an incredible opportunity for those two young gentlemen.”

Both Glenn and Caro are sophomores at Garden City Community College and both plan to transfer to Kansas State University in fall 2014. Glenn has a 4.0 GPA, plans to major in animal science, is a member of the GCCC Phi Theta Kappa national community college honors society, the Collegiate Farm Bureau, the Block & Bridle Club, the 2013 Meats Judging Team (National Western, North American Colleges & Teachers of Agriculture, and American Royal champions), Meats Judging First team All-American, and is a volunteer for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Finney County. Glenn owns a feed business, was a member of the Scott City FFA and Finney County 4-H.

Caro is also a sophomore at GCCC with a GPA of 3.9. He too is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, was on the 2013 Meats Judging Team and First Team All-American. Caro is a member of the Hispanic American Leadership organization (HALO) and while in high school in Satanta, he was a member of the 2011 State Champion Meats Team. He plans to major in engineering.

As a Garden City Community College alumnus, Alexander earned an Associates of Science degree while active in the 1993-94 Meats Judging Team. He completed a Bachelor of Science, Masters of Science, and Doctorate of Philosophy degrees at Texas Tech University where he was a member of the 1996 National Champion Meats Team and coached the 1999 national champs. Alexander has been at GCCC since 2000 and in 2006 was named outstanding faculty member. He is Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points and ServSafe certified instructor and has coached the 2003 National and the 2001, 2005, 2009, and 2011 Reserve National Champion teams.

“In our part of the world and in our way of life, businesses and producers understand the importance the Australian experience can be,” said Alexander. “For Skyler and Alan, to be able to represent not only GCCC but the United States of America, to meet with some of the giants in the food industry, and to compete toe-to-toe at this level with teams from around the world, well, bringing home and hanging the World Champions banner would be an incredible way to represent and honor the southwest Kansas way of life.”