Fresno State renames dairy unit after couple's donation helps education expand

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Fresno State Dairy Production Unit is now known as Manuel Mancebo Jr. and Katye Mancebo Dairy Unit.

Before each of their passing a few years ago the couple donated a million dollars to the university's dairy science program.

Dr. Joseph Castro knew the couple personally and shared his passion for education in agriculture when he became Fresno State President back in 2013.

"My vision for Fresno State was for it to become really a leader, a frontrunner in providing California agriculture with its future employees, industry leaders and innovators," he said.

Dr. Castro said the donation helped establish a permanent fund and yearly earnings at Fresno State to help support students and initiatives for generations to come.

The Fresno State dairy has been located off of Barstow and Chestnut Avenues since 1983.

The dairy is the largest student-run operation on the 1,000 acre campus farm laboratory and overseen by dairy science program coordinator and assistant professor Dr. Kyle Thompson.

He oversees a workforce of 24 students and 60 club members who show 160 holstein and jersey cows up and down California.

"These activities help enrich the academic experience of our students which in turn makes them well prepared to contribute towards their chosen field," said Dr. Thompson.

University leaders and students hope Fresno State will soon achieve the goal of being one of the top agricultural colleges in the nation.

"It is students like myself who appreciate being able to learn hands on right here on campus. We are fortunate enough to be in the heart of the dairy industry here in California. Our resources are endless," said McKayla Toste, Fresno State Student.

Cows at the diary are milked twice every day and milk is delivered to dairies in the Central Valley.

Plus that milk is used to produce Fresno State ice cream and cheese products sold at the Gibson Farm Market.
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