A new, $1 million facility is nearly complete at UF’s Beef Teaching Unit (BTU), with another $2.6 million facility scheduled to break ground in early 2017. The new building will provide students with updated equipment and meeting spaces which will also be used for UF/IFAS Extension and industry events.
The new building located at the south entrance of the BTU will house a large multipurpose room, a classroom, an office, a lab equipped for reproduction research, covered livestock pens, a new cattle chute, a paved parking lot and a four bedroom apartment to house students.
“The classroom here will be similar to the one at the Horse Teaching Unit, but it’s a third larger,” said Jesse Savell, Academic Coordinator for UF’s Animal Sciences department. “The one at the horse unit sometimes gets cramped when we have Block and Bridle Club or other activities there.”
Savell said the new building would also house industry events such as Beef Cattle Short Course and allied industry trade shows. Savell said the facility is designed to hold 200 people.
“This facility was built using legislative money that we lobbied for and Florida Farm Bureau lobbied for,” said Savell. “Farm Bureau helps the university with a lot of things, but funding for this building was on their priorities list when they went to Tallahassee the last two years and we’ve been successful both times.”
Savell said support from the Florida Cattlemen’s Association has also been crucial in lobbying efforts and in raising additional funding.
Look for more on this project in the 2017 January/February issue of FloridAgriculture Magazine.