Department of Agriculture Judging Teams

West Texas A&M University's Department of Agriculture has a long history of developing student success through various competitive judging teams. While each team has a unique focus on developing specific skills, they all provide valuable professional training in critical-thinking, decision-making and communication.
Livestock Judging Team

The Livestock Judging Team is a competitive event for students interested in the livestock industry. Students wishing to compete on the livestock judging team can be from any undergraduate major and are usually juniors or seniors.

Students evaluate cattle, sheep, goats, swine, and horses at some of the nation’s premier livestock operations; which provides the opportunity to see a vast array of the livestock industry and the chance to meet industry leaders along the way; all while preparing them for a career in a wide variety of fields.

Prospective team members enroll in the livestock evaluation course offered in the fall, which includes trips to many livestock facilities around the area for training. Over winter break, the team members will train and travel in preparation for their spring season, which begins at the National Western Stock Show in Denver, Colorado. Through the springs semester the team will compete at multiple national contest, including the Fort Worth Stock Show in Fort Worth, TX; the San Antonio Livestock Exposition in San Antonio, TX; and the Houston Livestock Show in Houston, TX.  Prior to classes starting in the fall, the team takes a trip for more exposure to judging and to gear up for the fall run. During the fall semester the WTAMU livestock judging team competes at the Tulsa State Fair, in Tulsa, OK; the State Fair of Texas, in Dallas, TX; the Flint Hills Classic, in Hutchinson, KS; the American Royal, in Kansas City, Missouri, and finishes their season at the North American International Livestock Exposition, in Louisville, KY.

For further information, contact Michael Semler at or (806) 651-2698

Meat Animal Evaluation Team


The Meat Animal Evaluation Team is for livestock and meat judging students interested in improving their understanding of livestock composition relative to the value of the live animal and the carcass. The National Meat Animal Evaluation contest is regarded as the pinnacle of a meat animal evaluators judging career and is the most practical test of meat and livestock evaluation. The national contest is comprised of four different categories: Market animal evaluation, Breeding animal evaluation, Meat evaluation and Communications. The contest challenges students to understand the economic value of market livestock and carcasses, while also understanding EPD’s and the importance of breeding animals to the industry. The students portray knowledge learned about meat animal and carcass evaluation and current market issues during a team activity in the communications division. WT students on the meat animal evaluation team would train to compete in a vigorous multi-day contest held each spring to vie for the National Championship in Meat Animal Evaluation.

For further information, contact Dr. Loni Lucherk at or (806) 651-3581; or Michael Semler at or (806) 651-2698.

Soil Judging Team

Soil judging is a competitive activity through which students develop skills relevant to careers in soil science, soil conservation, agronomy, agricultural education and more. Soil judging is open to any undergraduate major, and students are eligible to compete every semester, while they are enrolled at WT. Practices are held twice a week and students can earn course credit by enrolling in the profile evaluation course (fall) or applied soil survey course (spring). WT travels nationally to participate in 1-2 contests each semester. Contests consist of both individual and team portions. During each portion of the contest, students describe a series of soil profiles and their associated landscape characteristics. Their characterizations are then scored relative to those generated by soil science professionals in the contest region. 

For further information, contact Lauren Selph at or (806) 651-3580. 


Crops Judging Team
Horse Judging Team
Meat Judging Team
Agricultural Economics Quiz Bowl Team