Every year in early March, the Biological & Agricultural Engineering (BAE) department partners with the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CA&ES) to hold three contests for the annual Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Field Day. Field Day acts as a showcase for both the BAE Department and the CA&ES because it is open to FFA and 4-H high school students from California and surrounding states. These high school students come to Davis on Field Day to compete in agriculturally based judging contests, coordinated, organized, and run by undergraduate students in CA&ES and BAE. Faculty and staff in CA&ES and BAE and local community members serve as advisers, judges, and volunteers for these contests. The three contests that rely most heavily on the CA&ES and BAE partnership are Agricultural Mechanics, Farm Power, and Small Engines.
Agricultural Mechanics is held at the Western Center for Agricultural Equipment (WCAE). This contest seeks to effectively prepare high school students for the expectations of the agricultural mechanics workplace. Workers seeking careers in agricultural mechanics must develop a high degree of knowledge and skill and the critical thinking capabilities required to solve complex problems. This event blends the testing of manipulative skills and knowledge required for careers that involve fabrication or construction. This contest tests students in the following skill areas: Tool and Material Identification, Arc Welding, Problem Solving, Plan Interpretation, Electrical Wiring, Woodworking, Carpentry, Leveling and Land Measurement, Electric Motors and Controls, Plumbing, Oxyfuel Welding and Cutting, Cold Metal and Sheet Metal Fabrications, and Tool Maintenance.
Farm Power is also held at the WCAE. The contest is designed to test a student’s mechanical skills and abilities relating to power equipment used in agriculture. The Farm Power contest serves as a training forum for students interested in pursuing careers involving farm equipment. This contest tests students in the following subject areas: Parts and Tool Identification, General Farm Equipment Information, Tractor Operation and Safety, and Trouble Shooting of Tractors and Machinery.
Small Engines is held at Bainer Hall. The purpose of the contest is to stimulate appreciation for small engine repair and provide training in the skills and safety practices needed in order to diagnosing engine malfunctions. This contest tests students in the following subject areas: Identification of engine parts and tools, Basic Engine Theory, Hands-On Problem Solving, Technical Skills, and Troubleshooting.