The Intercollegiate Animal Welfare Judging/Assessment Contest (AWJAC) virtually celebrated its 21st year of competition on November 20th and 21st. The Ohio State University was once again well-represented across all student divisions: undergraduate junior, undergraduate senior, graduate, and veterinary. Students were co-coached by CHAIRE Members Zach England and Dr. Jess Pempek, and species covered in this year’s contest included psittacines as pets, cats in a research setting, and boar studs.
This year, AWJAC welcomed nearly 269 participants across 28 universities and eight countries. AWJAC “teaches students to assess the welfare of animals in a variety of settings using science-based methods and reasoning. Students are given the opportunity to weigh evidence and present sound evaluations. This contest ensures that tomorrow's leaders in the animal industries develop strong communication skills and acquire enhanced knowledge of animal welfare” (www.awjac.org).
Team members included:
- Undergraduate Junior: Elizabeth Schafer, Molly Mies, Jessie Bouterse
- Undergraduate Senior: MacKenzie Chapman, Maddie Pinkerton, Sarah Doner, Ashley Stroud
- Graduates: Hannah Maggard, Faith Oster, Nicole Lorig
- Veterinary: Brad Hogshead, Shannon Kelly, Taylor Williams
- Supportive Members: Ronna Wood, Robin Zendejas
Students competed both individually and as a team this year. Although the format was entirely virtual, this did not impede our students’ hard work and dedication in preparation for the contest. Collectively, they received 10 awards, the most awarded to any university. A complete list of the awards can be found here: https://www.avma.org/news/press-releases/winners-announced-2021-avma-animal-welfare-assessment-contest
Individual winners in the Undergraduate Junior Division included:
- Third place—Jessie Bouterse, Ohio State University
Team winners in the Undergraduate Junior Division included:
- Third place—Ohio State University
Individual winners in the Undergraduate Senior Division included:
- First place—Madison Pinkerton, Ohio State University
- Second place—MacKenzie Chapman, The Ohio State University
Team winners in the Undergraduate Senior Division included:
- First place—Ohio State University
Team winners in the Graduate Division included:
- Second place—Ohio State University
Top Placing Team in the Interactive Boar Stud Assessment:
- Graduate Team—Ohio State University
Individual winners in the Veterinary Division included:
- Fifth place—Shannon Kelley, Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine
Team winners in the Veterinary Division included:
- Second place—Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine
North Carolina State University will host the 2022 AWJAC; species and other contest details are TBD.
Please join us in congratulating the coaches and student participants on another incredibly successful contest!