To encourage innovation and problem-solving among students interested in agriculture, the Robert C. Byrd Institute and statewide partners are conducting the 3rd-annual West Virginia Agriculture Technology and Innovation Student Competition, which offers cash prizes to winners.

“We’re working to inspire and recognize students who can solve current and emerging issues in agriculture and food production,” said Bill Woodrum, director of RCBI’s Agricultural Innovations initiative.

The competition emphasizes solving an agriculture issue in one of the six focus areas: agribusiness systems; plant systems; animal systems; environmental and natural resources management; power, structural and technical systems; and food products and processing systems. The competition was designed to complement the new skills sets recently added to agricultural students’ studies about innovation and technology.   

Applications can be completed electronically at and are due by midnight Oct. 21. West Virginia students in 7th through 12th grades are eligible to compete.

Finalists will pitch their ideas Nov. 21 at the West Virginia Agricultural Innovation Showcase in Moorefield. Category and overall winners will be announced Dec. 18 at the West Virginia Agricultural Innovation Showcase in Huntington.

Cash prizes, including a top prize of $500, will be awarded to winning entries in each category.

Joining RCBI in this effort to promote agricultural technology and spur innovation are Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College, the West Virginia Department of Agriculture, the West Virginia Department of Education and the West Virginia Small Business Development Center.

For more information, contact Tina Metzer at 304.490.9308 or o

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