NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - People often say, "You learn by doing." That is definitely the case when it comes to the Purple Premium Cattle Sale.
For the past year, the sale has been planned and executed all by students.
As a Texas cold front blew in, Stephen F. Austin State University advanced beef science students checked on a herd of bulls scheduled to be in the ring at the purple premium cattle sale.
"The bull here, the Hereford bull, all these red bulls are pretty much Beefmaster bulls," said Stuart Hastings, the assistant sales manager. "There's a handful of black Beefmaster bulls as well."
In all, there are 30 purebred lots, making up over 200 head.
The majority are consigned by cattle owners from Texas and adjoining states. Sales manager Tanner Campbell makes the first contact.
"Telling them that the class is putting it on, it's really a drive for the local people because they want to support us," Campbell said.
They also want to sell some livestock. Or something else, too.
"I've been getting a lot of semen donated to the sale," Hastings said. "We're going to auction that off first. They're going to be top quality bulls that will improve any cow herd there is."
"The sale product is only part of putting on a quality cattle auction. When cattle buyers come to town you got to treat them special.
"SFA is the only university in the state that offers the hands-on sales production experience," said Meiko Filer, the public relations manager for the sale.
Only one other school in Illinois provides a similar experience.
"This course is preparing us for everyday life with communication skills," said Kaylae Walton, the sale and sponsorship coordinator. "It's helped us a lot with our time management, especially meeting all these deadlines, getting consigners in by a certain date, so we can make sure we have everything ready for the sale catalog."
Interested buyers may view cattle on Friday, Nov. 10 or the day of the sale on Nov. 11 at the SFA Beef Farm on U.S. Highway 259.
Bids will be taken at the sale ring and online. Students have setup all the social media sites so you can learn more about the sale. For more information on the sale, click this link.