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Montana Ag Network: 2020 NILE Merit Heifer program scholarship available

Posted at 9:46 AM, May 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-23 11:46:35-04

The opportunity for kids to get started in the cattle industry is knocking as one of America’s most unique youth agricultural scholarship programs is now taking applications.

The NILE Merit Heifer program is a live animal scholarship meaning the recipients are given a young, live, heifer calf.

Dwain Hould is the NILE Merit Heifer Program Committee Chairman and he said for 20 years, it’s helped youth get a start in the beef cattle business and gain knowledge about the beef industry.

“These kids are very appreciative of what they get and realize it was probably the only way they were going to get into some of these herds and get cattle and then for them to be donated,” said Hould. “Without the donors, we wouldn’t have a program.”

During the program duration, participants are responsible for caretaking, record keeping, breeding, and bringing the heifer back one year later to the NILE Stock Show and Rodeo. Hould said the program helps keep the younger generation interested in animal agriculture.

“Agriculture’s future is the kids and that’s kind of what we’re trying to do is keep them involved,” said Hould.

Program participants are chosen based on merit, future goals, and ability to care for the animal.

4-H or FFA members who are 12-16 years old may apply.

Applications are due June 28th. For more information, visit here.

The 2020 recipients will be announced in late August 2019.

-Reported by Russell Nemetz/MTN News