The UBC Dairy Centre results from consolidation of UBC and Agriculture Agri-Food Canada (Agassiz) (AAFC) dairy research resources. UBC transferred the dairy herd from its Point Grey campus to Agassiz in 1996, and took over full operation of the facilities in April of 1997. Subsequently dairy resources from the Faculty's Oyster River Farm were consolidated at this new Centre. In 1998, an innovative partnership between The University of British Columbia and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) formally established the UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre in Agassiz, the heart of BC?s dairy community. The Dairy Centre is the largest dairy education and research facility in Canada and provides research facilities unique in North America. Its growing international reputation enables it to attract students and researchers from across the country and around the world generating a rich centre for academic and cultural exchange. Research efforts focus on animal reproductive physiology and technology, animal nutrition and metabolism, management of manure constituents, and animal behaviour and welfare.
A major step in its development was completion of a new 300 animal research building containing a 24-cow milk parlour and administration offices in June 2000 which was officially opened in November 1, 2000 by AAFC's Associate Deputy Minister, Brian Morissey and the UBC's President Martha Piper. A new feed intake facility with equipment to measure feed and water intake by individual group-housed heifers and cows was completed in January 2005. Construction of replacement calf and heifer housing facilities will be completed by July 2006. Plans are being developed for construction and equipping much needed research laboratories and construction of expanded student housing.
A primary role of the Centre is to educate students and postdoctoral fellows who devote 2-5 years of full-time study and research to complete their programs. Scholarships play a key role in attracting and retaining outstanding scholars to the Centre. Individuals and organizations donate to the two existing endowments under development which support the James Shelford Scholarship or the Guy Fowler Bursary Fund.
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