Student Achievements at RMC

Research Competition, Quiz Bowl, Processed Meats, and Iron Chef Results

Undergraduate and Graduate Student Research Competition Results

The 2023 Student Research Competition took place on Sunday, June 25th, at RMC. The research presented by these students was concise, educational, and, most of all, an excellent tribute to the type of research that is occurring at the university level. The undergraduate competition was sponsored by JBS Foods/Pilgrim’s/Swift Prepared Foods. The master student competition was sponsored by Tyson Foods, Inc. and Hormel Foods Corporation sponsored the Ph.D. competition. 


1st Varisra Upatising, Purdue University
2nd Benjamin Carpenter, Texas Tech University
3rd Taylor Looper, University of Arkansas


1st Linnea Rimmer, Kansas State University
2nd Elizabeth Neal, University of Arkansas
3rd Grace Corrette, Kansas State University

Ph.D. :

1st Michelle LeMaster, The University of Melbourne
2nd Erin Beyer, Kansas State University
3rd Nicolas Herrera, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Bobby VanStavern Award for Beef Quality Research

Dr. Bob VanStavern spent his career as a meat scientist at The Ohio State University. He was directly involved in establishing the quality parameters for the Certified Angus Beef® brand in 1978, leading the beef community’s efforts to be consumer driven. Upon his passing in February 2020, this mentorship fund was founded to honor his legacy to the Certified Angus Beef® brand and the meat science community. The funds from this mentorship support recognition of a student presenting research at RMC in beef quality and/or consumer perceptions and demand for high-quality beef. The winner of the third annual Bobby VanStavern Award for Beef Quality Research goes to Andres Mendizabal, Texas Tech University. 

Undergraduate Quiz Bowl Results

This year we set the record for the amount of teams competing in the Undergraduate Meat Science Quiz competition! Joanna Hardcastle, 2023 Quiz Bowl Committee Chair, and the 2023 quiz bowl committee hosted 34 teams from 20 academic programs. After multiple rounds and several wins the team from Texas Tech University was named the 2023 RMC Undergraduate Meat Science Quiz Bowl Champions.  Thank you to JBS Foods, Pilgrim’s and Swift Prepared Foods for being the sponsor of this year’s quiz bowl competition. 

Champion Team was Texas Tech University coached by Shae Lynn Sarchet, Devin Gonzales, and Paige Tegeler and team members Macy Lawrence, Shelton Ludeke, Meagan McMurray, and Anna Wyle. 

Reserve Champion Team was Kansas State University coached by Erin Beyer and team members consisted of Chesney Effling, Ellie Kidwell, Stephanie Witberler, and Delaney Shaw.

Processed Meat Judging Top 10

Thank you JBS Foods/Pilgrim’s and Swift Prepared Foods for sponsoring the Processed Meats Contest as well as Hormel Foods Corporation, UltraSource, as well as several local processors for donating the products. Additionally, this contest would also not be possible without the help of the committee. The contest committee members were Derek Schroeder, Spencer Carter, Nelson Gaydos, Allie Hobson, Bryce Gerlach, Aaron Tapian, and Collin Corbin as well as many other volunteers. Congratulations to all of the students that participated, especially to the top ten in the undergraduate and graduate divisions.  

Graduate Division:

1. Nicolas Herrera
2. Megan Eckhardt
3. Kayle Eivins
4. Preston Twilligear
5. Kaylee Greiner
6. Ian Lovell
7. Melissa Davis
8. Anna Scott
9. Jake Bagby
10. Shae Sarchet

Undergraduate Division:

1. Tessa Barrett
2. Hailey Moulton
3. Daniel Raab
4. Erik Bishop
5. Zane Platter
6. Zoe Mayes
7. Helene Keiser
8. JC Buentello
9. Mason Nagel
10. Ambri Harrigal

Iron Chef Results

Iron Chef was an amazing experience combining meat science and culinary arts, sponsored by Cargill. The students prepared a savory and sweet hot dish within 1 hour and were mentored by Barbara Tapian, Jennifer Everson, Markus Miller, Jennifer Johnson, Chandler Steele, and Miguel Del Toro. The top two teams in the savory division were Group #15: Loaded Barbecue Tator Tot Casserole and Group #11: Fiesta Carnitas.  

Loaded BBQ Tater Tot Casserole Group 15​

  •  Peyton Arnold​ 
  • Chloe Calhoun​ 
  • Madison Cossa​ 
  • Madeline Hobika​ 
  • Zachary Holescher​ 
  • Nicole Johnson 
  • Sam Kaster​ 
  • Rafael Martinez​ 
  • Lillian Norton​ 
  • Elias Perez​

Fiesta Carnita Group 11​

  •  Jake Bagby ​ 
  • Kara Belt​ 
  • Rachel Crowley​ 
  • Lucila de la Caridad Garcia​ 
  • Morgan McKinzie​ 
  • Amy Pokorny​ 
  • Rodrigo Portillo​ 
  • Shelby Raber​ 
  • Ashley Rivera Pitti​ 
  • Tyler Thompson​

The top two teams in the sweet hotdish division were Group #4: Paul Bunyan Pineapple Chicken Surprise and Group #2: Sweet Sausage Apple Crisp.

Paul Bunyan Pineapple Chicken Surprise Group 4​

  •  Beatriz Castanho​ 
  • Avery Foster​ 
  • Brayden Frank​ 
  • Brody Geist​ 
  • Deidra Green​ 
  • Akarshitha Karree​ 
  • Allyson McCarty​ 
  • Makayla Quick​ 
  • Blake Robbins​
  • Trinity Smith​

Sweet Sausage Apple Crisp Group 2​

  •  Reid Anema​ 
  • Elizabeth Chmielewski​ 
  • Claire Cunningham​ 
  • Abigail Dewert​ 
  • Jade Edwards​ 
  • Clint Lee​ 
  • Carlos Mairena Luna​ 
  • Isabel Ribeiro​ 
  • Kaden Sherrell​ 
  • Natalie White

Congratulations to all competitors!