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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU Student Marketing Chapter Receives National Honors

LAS CRUCES -- After only two years in existence, New Mexico State University's National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) chapter was named outstanding chapter overall at this year's national conference in San Diego, Calif. NMSU's chapter also co-hosted the April conference and received two innovative idea awards.

NAMA student chapters focus on undergraduates interested in agricultural sales, marketing and business careers. "We have a very well-rounded chapter here with students from the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences , as well as the College of Business Administration and Economics," said Cynda Clary, NMSU chapter advisor.

The NMSU chapter was named national outstanding chapter for its annual report detailing the club's fundraising activities, chapter communications and career planning programs. Loralee Woods, of Grady, and Connie Baca, of Quemado, compiled the report.

"I think of NAMA as a service club for the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences ," Clary said. "It teaches students to market themselves and forces them to think about their careers before the last semester of their senior year."

NAMA also provides real-life situations for agribusiness students. During the conference, student teams compete in an agri-marketing contest. NMSU's chapter presented a one-year marketing plan for PB Flow, a hypothetical product that controls pink bollworm in cotton with pheromones. In preparation for the contest, the students conducted product surveys and promotions, defined their marketing strategies and established sales goals.

The chapter also won two innovative idea awards, the maximum allowed for each chapter. One idea increased chapter recruitment by using banners, tabletop displays and brochures, and by participating in a weekly "coffee time" for students sponsored by the college dean.

The second innovative idea created a central communications link for the chapter. David Massey, of Moriarty, developed a page on the World Wide Web for the chapter. Members and prospective members can get on-line information about meeting dates, guest speakers and membership requirements. Prior to the national conference in San Diego, the web page also had links to San Diego web sites.

For his efforts, Massey was awarded the national NAMA internship. He will be working this summer at NAMA's headquarters in Kansas City developing a national NAMA web page.

Other NMSU students receiving awards or recognition were Sarah McKenzie, of McCamey, Texas, who received a $500 national NAMA scholarship; Bill Chambers, of Roswell, who was selected as the official convention photographer; and Kristin Yarbro, of Las Cruces, who sold the most tickets for the Agricultural Business Education Foundation raffle.

Clary, who's been an advisor at different universities for six years, is enthused by the work ethic of NMSU students. "They aren't scared of working hard, even on weekends," she said.

Over 900 business people also attended the convention, including representatives from chemical companies, farm publications and equipment dealerships. "These companies saw the strong presence NMSU had at the convention and that publicity is going to pay off in the future," Clary said. "Our ultimate goal was to convince potential employers to come to our university to interview and recruit our graduates."