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Agriculture Students Participate in Alltech Competition

EKU Agriculture team (l-r): Settimi, Lanham, Mahon, Black, Spencer, Armour, Liu

EKU Agriculture students competed in the Alltech Innovation Competition last Saturday in Lexington, Ky. Team members were sophomore Mackenzie Mahon (Agriculture); juniors Kelly Armour (Agriculture Education) and Maria Lanham (Pre-Veterinary Medicine); and seniors Abigail Black (Horticulture), and Curtis Spencer (Agriculture). Faculty advisors for the team were Dr. Mike McDermott and Ms. Yangxuan Liu. 

The Alltech competition gives undergraduate and graduate students across the state an opportunity to present business ideas to investors. Event coordinator Meghan Neihaus says that every year the competition “honors the Kentucky students that have entrepreneurial aspirations.” Winning teams take home a $10,000 prize. 

EKU's student team presented a business opportunity to provide alternative water filters using hemp fiber, which would provide easy access to clean water for people in developing countries. 

Even though the EKU team did not bring home first prize, Ms. Liu had only great things to say about the students who competed. She stated that her team “did an excellent job in the competition, and represented EKU very well. The students presented themselves as confident, competent individuals, and they communicated very well in front of the large audience.” 

2017 Alltech Innovation Competition teams“Kentucky was a winner today,” said Dr. Karl Dawson, vice president and chief scientific officer at Alltech. “We really saw what the capabilities of our young people are.”

For more information on EKU Agriculture, visit:, or contact the Department of Agriculture at 859-622-2228.

Photo caption: EKU team (left to right): Dr. John Settimi, department chair (standing in for Dr. Mike McDermott), Maria Lanham, Mackenzie Mahon, Abigail Black, Curtis Spencer, Kelly Armour, and Ms. Yangxuan Liu, team advisor.

Published on April 05, 2017

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