A Marshfield High School student has earned a $20,000 college scholarship for her work in researching the pros-and-cons of consuming raw milk. Carly Barker, a senior, earned the prize during the Young Epidemiology Scholars Competition this past weekend in Washington, D.C.
As part of her project, Barker surveyed her peers at the school and asked them about their beliefs and attitudes of drinking milk that was unpasteurized. She also interviewed physicians at the Marshfield Clinic about their findings when people become ill from various sources of contamination.
Barker says her research showed that the state’s $26 billion dairy industry could be impacted negatively if any type of outbreak should occur from drinking raw milk.
For the second consecutive year, Wisconsin lawmakers are considering a bill to allow dairy farmers to sell milk straight from their bulk tank if they agree to certain restrictions.
Carly was selected as one of 12 national finalists out of 562 students across the country who entered the competition.
She plans to study environmental science and political science at Cartage College in Kenosha. Barker is also planning to study abroad next year and says the scholarship money will go a long way to help pay for those expenses.