Renovation Starts at UGA Teaching Dairy in Athens

This is a tremendously exciting time for the faculty, staff, and students alike in UGA’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences!!  On Monday, August 22nd, 2016 the dairy farm began a renovation of its classroom, office, and laboratory facilities.  This project has been a long time in the making and one we are extremely excited about!

The dairy farm has been a staple to the undergraduate curriculum in the Animal and Dairy Science Department at UGA.  This farm has offered coursework and animal numbers to make sure every introductory student gets to work with/put their hands on live animals during their first year in the department.  Beyond this, the farm has served as a hub for research at UGA involving dairy cattle to include studies in mastitis, nutrition, and reproduction among others.  Finally, the farm is open to the public, which means they are frequented by those that just want to see a cow milked to young people in 4-H looking for a group of cows to practice judging.

Beyond that, the farm has served as a point of student pride and importance in student development.  The author of this blog posting (Jillian Bohlen) can remember the days of protesting its closure at the arch in 2003, to completing her masters research project on this farm, to now developing the interest in new UGA recruits in dairy production and management.  This farm and the animals it houses, are important…important to faculty, staff, students, and the community at large.

The fact that this investment into its future is finally happening is a monumental day to be marked.  This gives hope that this staple part of UGA will remain intact for generations to come and will continue to serve as a critical point of development for many undergraduates in Animal and Dairy Science’s department.  There is hope that this renewed interest in the farm and the sprucing up of it’s 1970’s image will promote more foot traffic by our fellow dairy producers as well as the community wishing to learn about agriculture in GA.  The new facility will boast an up to date classroom space with easy to use AV hookups, a usable office for farm staff, a laboratory space for researchers, a laboratory space for farm needs, a common area for farm employees, and a foyer to greet guests as well as display historical and present day information regarding the farm for visitors.

Below are some pictures of the “way it was” as we now refer to it.  This is the cleaned up version just before demolition was to start. We will continue to keep you updated on the renovation process and look forward to an open house for all to view/visit in Spring!  Thanks to those that support the dairy farm, the dairy science program, and the students of UGA.  A special thanks to those that worked so diligently throughout the years to make this day happen to create a learning environment that we can be proud of!

Dairy Back Room

Above is the old “lab room”.  This was a common space that served almost all “needs” of the farm and research faculty.

Dairy Boot Room

This room used to be student housing as an “apartment” with a loft.  In its more recent years, it was an overflow storage room and boot/locker room for student workers.

Dairy Classroom 2

Dairy Classroom 3

The two pictures above are of the “classroom”.  When the office became unusable in recent years, this space also became the office, student worker sign in location, etc.  It was the “common” space for all farm activities, which often made its use by several groups difficult.

Dairy Hallway 2

Hallway up to office.  Wall borders parlor.

Dairy Hallway

Hallway between classroom and parlor.

Dairy Old Office

Old office.  Used mainly as storage space.

Dairy Hallway 4

Hallway back to lab room.

Dairy Outside

Outside of primary dairy building.