MSU Horticulture Team Places Second at Collegiate Landscape Competition in Utah

The Michigan State University Student Horticulture Association landscape team finished second in the 41st Annual National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) National Collegiate Landscape Competition in Provo, Utah held in March.

April 3, 2017

MSU's Josh Beasley

The Michigan State University Student Horticulture Association landscape team finished second in the 41st Annual National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) National Collegiate Landscape Competition in Provo, Utah held in March.


The four-day event consisted of educational workshops, a career fair and 29 competitive events that have been termed the Landscape Olympics. MSU team members were among 672 students representing 60 colleges and universities from across the United States and Canada. Brigham Young University, the host school, won the competition.


The team was composed of students from the Department of Horticulture and the Institute of Agricultural Technology (IAT) Landscape and Nursery Management Program. Team members were Josh Beasley, Trenton Bowen, Jocelyn Brumwell, Beth Copeland, Zack Dueweke, Nick Fortuna, Tyler Gilson, Stephanie Makela, Abby Makowski, Lauren Niergarth, Josh Nieuwsma, Charlie Pacer, Lee Rainey, Wesley Raker, Cheyenne Sloan, Anthony Soster, Landon Tillmann, Corinne Tucker and Preston Zoellner.  Team coaches were Marcus Duck and Brad Rowe. Club advisers Norm Lownds and Bob Schutzki also attended and assisted with the team.


Students were score individually and by team. MSU’s top performers in individual events were:

  • Tyler Gilson, 3D Exterior Landscape Design (first place).
  • Tyler Gilson, Computer-aided Landscape Design (first place).
  • Jocelyn Brumwell, Business Management (first place).
  • Corinne Tucker, Exterior Landscape Design (first place).
  • Preston Zoellner, Irrigation Design (first place).
  • Josh Beasley, Landscape Lighting (first place).
  • Stephanie Makela, Plant Problem Diagnosis (first place).
  • Lauren Niergarth, Interior Plant ID (second place).
  • Jocelyn Brumwell, Annual and Perennial ID (sixth place).
  • Cheyenne Sloan, Turf and Weed ID (sixth place).
  • Charlie Pacer, Maintenance Cost Estimating (seventh place).
  • Josh Beasley, Compact Excavator Operation (eighth place).
  • Josh Nieuwsma, Construction Cost Estimating (eighth place).
  • Corinne Tucker, Interior Plant ID (ninth place).
  • Josh Nieuwsma, Tractor Loader Backhoe Operation (10th place).
  • Charlie Pacer, Sales Presentation (11th place).
  • Corinne Tucker, Interior Landscape Design (12th place).
  • Nick Fortuna, Plant Problem Diagnosis (13th place).
  • Abby Makowski, Woody Ornamental Plant ID (13th place).
  • Nick Fortuna, Skidsteer Operation (14th place).


Top team performances were:

  • Team of Anthony Soster and Preston Zoellner, Irrigation Assembly (first place).
  • Team of Josh Nieuwsma and Lee Rainey, Wood Construction (sixth place).
  • Team of Tyler Gilson and Lee Rainey, Landscape Maintenance Operations (second place).
  • Team of Tyler Gilson and Wesley Raker, Employee Development (third place).
  • Team of Zack Dueweke and Lee Rainey, Hardscape Installation (fourth place)
  • Team of Beth Copeland, Zack Dueweke and Tyler Gilson, Landscape Plant Installation (seventh place).
  • Team of Anthony Soster and Preston Zoellner, Irrigation Troubleshooting (12th place).
  • Team of Josh Beasley and Lee Rainey, Truck and Trailer Operation (13th place).


Top scorers for MSU were Tyler Gilson (453), Lee Rainey (332), Josh Beasley (311), Corinne Tucker (252), Preston Zoellner (244), Zack Dueweke (239) and Josh Nieuwsma (221).


For scoring the most points among all 672 students, Gilson won the Superstar Award and the  $1,500 check that goes with it.


For winning the irrigation design competition, Zoellner was awarded an all-expenses-paid trip to Seattle, Washington, to attend the American Society of Irrigation Consultants convention in April. Also, Gilson and Lee Rainey received $2,000 in Husqvarna equipment for winning the Landscape Maintenance Operations event.


In addition, Makowski, Nieuwsma, Rainey, Tucker and Zoellner were awarded scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $2,700 from the NALP Foundation. Overall, the team came home with over $12,000 in scholarships and awards.


Team members raised money to finance the trip through Student Horticulture Association activities such as the Spring Show. The following industry sponsors donated nearly $17,000 to help support the team:



  • Bartlett Tree Experts, Stamford, Connecticut                                           
  • Davey Tree Expert Company, Kent, Ohio                                     
  • Landscape Design Services, Holland, Michigan
  • Mike’s Landscaping, Davison, Michigan                                  
  • MSU Institute of Agricultural Technology                                   
  • C. Raker and Sons, Litchfield, Michigan                                                 



  • Drost Landscape, Petoskey, Michigan                                                  
  • Ewing Irrigation and Landscape Supply, Phoenix, Arizona                    
  • Hunter Industries, San Marcos, California                                             
  • Katerberg VerHage, Grand Rapids, Michigan                                        
  • Kloosterman Landscaping, Caledonia, Michigan                                   
  • LandMark Landscape, Haslett, Michigan                                               
  • MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Alumni Association
  • Old Mission Associates, Traverse City, Michigan                                   
  • Schill Grounds Management, North Ridgeville, Ohio                     
  • Tillmann Wholesale Growers, New Franken, Wisconsin                           



  • Arborlawn, Lansing, Michigan 
  • Designs by Sundown, Littleton, Colorado                                             
  • Garst LP Gas, Petersburg, Michigan                                                   
  • Luke Landscape, Haslett, Michigan                                                                                                         
  • MSU Federal Credit Union, East Lansing, Michigan                                
  • Natures Corner at Glass City, Holland, Ohio                                 
  • Spaans Landscape Management, Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Spartan Irrigation, Lansing, Michigan     
  • TruNorth Landscaping, Traverse City, Michigan                        
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