By: SDSU Extention iGrow

BROOKINGS – First Bank & Trust has announced a $500,000 investment to help South Dakota State University with construction of the new precision agriculture facility on campus.

The new facility is planned for the northwest corner of campus. It will be a center for research, teaching and innovation that covers the entire spectrum of precision agriculture and will enable collaboration with differing disciplines.

“First Bank & Trust is among SDSU’s longest and most-generous corporate partners, and the bank has been a lead donor to vital projects that support agriculture,” SDSU President Barry Dunn said. “First Bank & Trust was there when we needed help putting together a plan to build a new Swine Education and Research Facility. They continue to have a tremendous impact on our ability to deliver on our mission and are just phenomenal partners.”

SDSU is the nation’s first land-grant university to offer a bachelor’s degree in precision agriculture. The degree is a collaborative effort encompassing the Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department, Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department and College of Engineering.

SDSU’s precision agriculture degree will provide students with access to the cutting-edge developments in the rapidly evolving intersection of agronomics, high-speed sensor technology, data management and advanced machinery development. Students will be prepared for lifelong careers that support economically and environmentally sustainable agriculture.

“As a longtime supporter of both SDSU and the agriculture industry, First Bank & Trust is proud to support the new precision ag facility, a catalyst for ag industry innovation,” said Kevin Tetzlaff, president of First Bank & Trust.

“This transformative and collaborative facility will not only drive production agriculture, but also workforce development in a wide array of related industries. First Bank & Trust is honored to make this strategic investment into the ag economy of the future.”

First Bank & Trust is part of Fishback Financial Corporation, one of South Dakota’s largest privately held bank holding companies with 23 locations in 18 communities in South Dakota and Minnesota. Headquartered in Brookings, the organization has more than 600 employees and a history that dates back more than 130 years. First Bank & Trust is family- and employee-owned and dedicated to giving back in its communities.

SDSU photo: First Bank and Trust is making a $500,000 investment in the new SDSU precision agriculture facility. SDSU President Barry Dunn (left) and College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences Interim Dean Don Marshall joined Van Fishback, chairman, Fishback Financial Corporation, and Kevin Tetzlaff, president of First Bank & Trust (center) to accept the gift along with SDSU Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering Department Head Van Kelley, South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station Interim Director Bill Gibbons and SDSU Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science Department Head David Wright.

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