Iowa State University Student Farm Celebrates 75 Years Sept. 21-22

September 5th, 2018

AMES, Iowa - Iowa State University’s student-managed farm is celebrating its 75th anniversary.

Known as the Ag 450 Farm, the farm is operated by students enrolled in the course “Agricultural Farm Management and Operations 450”. The farm is the only completely student-managed farm at a land grant university in the nation. It first began with the purchase of 187 acres south of Ames in 1943. Approximately 150 students are involved in the management of the farm each year.

On the Ag 450 Farm, 4,000 head of hogs are finished annually and 1,400 acres are planted to corn and soybeans. The course serves as the capstone experience for students majoring in agricultural studies, but also is open to students in other majors.

Robby Frutchey, instructor-in-charge of Ag 450 and agricultural studies alum, says the course is designed to function as a diversified livestock and grain operation similar to most Iowa farms.

“This includes record-keeping and accounting, negotiating and making decisions related to buying inputs and capital projects. The students market and sell farm products. And, they provide the daily care of livestock and maintenance of farm facilities and machinery. A huge part of the class is learning to maximize their time and be efficient,” said Frutchey.

To celebrate the Ag 450 Farm’s 75th anniversary, student farm managers are planning a celebration Sept. 21-22. The celebration includes a banquet on Sept. 21 at the Jeff and Deb Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center and an open house located at the farm on Sept. 22. 

To purchase tickets for the banquet, review event details or view a video about the farm visit or call (800) 626-0015. Registration is requested by September 14.

The Ag 450 Farm open house on Sept. 22 is free and open to the public. It will begin four hours prior to the Cyclone football game (kick-off time is yet to be announced).

The Ag 450 Farm is located at 52097 260th Street Ames, Iowa, about 4.5 miles south of central campus. 


Robby Frutchey, Agricultural Education and Studies,, (515) 294-8802

Melea Reicks Licht, Agriculture and Life Sciences Communications,, (515) 294-8892