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K-State Today

March 30, 2016

Landscape Contracting Team places eighth at landscape competition

Submitted by Cathie Lavis

The K-State Landscape Contracting Team took eighth place out of 62 schools at the National Collegiate Landscape Competition, and brought home a $500 award for winning the Career Development Series with more than 25 team members. The event was hosted during spring break by Mississippi State University. 

The National Collegiate Landscape Competition is an annual three-day competition and networking event for students enrolled in interior and exterior horticulture programs at two-year and four-year colleges and universities from across the country. Each year, a different host location is selected, which gives the participants a chance to see different parts of the country and also increases the level of difficulty for some of the outdoor competitions.

More than 750 landscape industry students demonstrate their skills in real-world, competitive events coupled with an outstanding career fair. The competition provides landscape industry companies with unparalleled opportunities to meet and recruit next-generation landscape industry superstars. This is a highly employable industry.

This year, 62 college teams and one FFA team — a total of 770 students — participated in 28 individual and team competitions, including tree climbing, hardscape installation, wood construction, plant identification, sales presentation, exterior/interior design, irrigation troubleshooting, skid steer, personnel management and small engine repair. 

K-State's top 10 winners, the category and their place include:

Eric Grant, 3-D exterior design, third place 
Beau Fick and Simon Loose, arboriculture techniques, ninth place
Conner White, business management, second place 
Nate Snethen and Ty Lutz, hardscape installation, ninth place 
Alan Rourke and Justin Malone, irrigation assembly, second place 
Alan Rourke and Jonathan Jessen, irrigation troubleshooting, fifth place
Alan Rourke, irrigation design, first place national champion
Brooke Evans and Karen Schneck, employment development, fourth place
Paul Knackendoffel, sales presentation, ninth place 
Ty Lutz, skid steer operation, 10th place 
Jesse Gilmore, turf and weed identification, eighth place 

Other competitive events and team members not listed above: Andrea Johnson, exterior landscape design and interior plant identification; Scott Meyer and Justin Malone, truck and trailor operation; Nate Snethen, turf and weed identification; Jesse Gilmore, plant problem diagnosis; Addie Wassenberg, plant problem diagnosis and landscape equipment operation; Caitlynn McVey, landscape equipment operation and landscape plant installation; Lauren Walz, landscape plant installation; Jonathan Jessen, small engine operation and tractor loader backhoe operation; Paul Knackendoffel, maintenance cost estimating; Bruce Moore, interior plant identification and interior landscape design; Kellen Womochil, computer aided landscape design; Josie Riggs, construction cost estimating and woody ornamental plant identification; Madi Culley and Miranda Alumbaugh, annual and perennial identification; and Taylor Warnick and Dalton Dunn, career development series leaders.

The team is coached by Greg Davis and Cathie Lavis. This event was hosted by Kansas State University in 2012. 

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