Two of the premier youth livestock programs offered by the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at the University of Kentucky are the Livestock Judging and Livestock Skillathon Programs.  Each year over 700 youth participate in these two programs at the Kentucky 4-H Livestock Judging Contest and Awards Ceremony and the Kentucky 4-H Livestock Skillathon Contest.  In addition, select individuals from these contests earn the privilege of representing Kentucky at the National Livestock Judging and National Livestock Skillathon Contests.

While youth gain considerable knowledge about various aspects of livestock evaluation and production through their participation in these programs, the important life skills these youth learn through participating are the real hallmark of the Livestock Judging and Skillathon Programs.  Youth develop character and learn the value of the hard work and preparation that it takes to be successful, and develop decision-making and communication skills that will stay with them for a lifetime.  In addition, the friendships these youth make with others from different areas of the state are one’s that will remain with them throughout their lives.  Furthermore, network of elite livestock producers and farmers that these youth get to meet and learn about during their judging and skillathon careers will be tremendously valuable to them in the future.

As we are sure you are aware, it takes a significant financial investment to ensure these programs maintain the tradition of excellence that they have experienced in the past.  While the Department of Animal and Food Sciences continues to devote substantial financial and human resources to these programs, we must also rely on donations to help offset the costs associated with purchasing awards, hosting the awards ceremonies, and training and travel for our National Livestock Judging and Skillathon Contest team members.  It is our feeling that this is a worthwhile investment because of the important life-changing skills that youth learn through these programs.

We would like to ask you to consider providing financial support to help with funding these programs.  We are confident that your investment will be a sound one and will reap many returns in the lives of these young people.  Any amount of financial support would be greatly appreciated.  To assist in our fund-raising endeavors, we have implemented a tiered contribution structure to recognize contributors, which is as follows:

Platinum Contributors = $1,000 or more
Gold Contributors = $500-$999
Silver Contributors = $250-$499
Bronze Contributors = $1-$249

If you would like to make a contribution to the either the Kentucky 4-H Livestock Judging Program or Kentucky 4-H Livestock Skillathon Program, please click here for the Donation Reply Form.