Greg Vogel, Ag 450 farm operator, second from left, and Robby Frutchey, instructor-in-charge, standing, review operating budgets in the Ag 450 farm classroom with student farm managers Savanah Laur, left, and Marissa Lange. Iowa State University
Greg Vogel, Ag 450 farm operator, second from left, and Robby Frutchey, instructor-in-charge, standing, review operating budgets in the Ag 450 farm classroom with student farm managers Savanah Laur, left, and Marissa Lange.

Iowa State University student farm turns 75

Ag 450 Farm is the only completely student-managed farm at a land grant university in the nation. It first began with the purchase of 187 acres south of Ames in 1943.

Iowa State University’s student-managed farm is celebrating its 75th anniversary.

Known as the Ag 450 Farm, the farm is operated by students enrolled in the course “Agricultural Farm Management and Operations 450”. The farm is the only completely student-managed farm at a land grant university in the nation. It first began with the purchase of 187 acres south of Ames in 1943. Approximately 150 students are involved in the management of the farm each year.

On the Ag 450 Farm, 4,000 head of hogs are finished annually and 1,400 acres are planted to corn and soybeans. The course serves as the capstone experience for students majoring in agricultural studies, but also is open to students in other majors.

Robby Frutchey, instructor-in-charge of Ag 450 and agricultural studies alum, says the course is designed to function as a diversified livestock and grain operation similar to most Iowa farms.

“This includes record-keeping and accounting, negotiating and making decisions related to buying inputs and capital projects. The students market and sell farm products. And, they provide the daily care of livestock and maintenance of farm facilities and machinery. A huge part of the class is learning to maximize their time and be efficient,” says Frutchey.

To celebrate the Ag 450 Farm’s 75th anniversary, student farm managers are planning a celebration Sept. 21-22. The celebration includes a banquet on Sept. 21 at the Jeff and Deb Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center and an open house located at the farm on Sept. 22.

To purchase tickets for the banquet or review event details visit ag450celebration.org or call 800-626-0015. Registration is requested by Sept. 14.

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