Dairy Spotlight: Dr. Joe Domecq
Academic Specialist, Department of Animal Science.
I was involved in a serious automobile accident during my first year of college at Cal Poly. I spent a year in the hospital, and it took almost 5 years before I could walk with a cane. As I recovered from my injuries, I realized that I still wanted to work with cows and be involved in agriculture, but I had to find a different way to be involved. I slowly accepted that my future was going to depend on my ability to use my head as my physical abilities were considerably reduced. I also realized that I had learned a great deal about people, communication and, most of all, patience.
I eventually returned to Cal Poly and became much more engaged in my studies. I then graduated from Virginia Tech with a M.S. degree before coming to MSU for a Ph.D. Many opportunities became available during my graduate studies at Michigan State University, and over time I realized I was doing exactly what I wanted to do and never left.
During my time at MSU, I have advised students in the Ag Tech Dairy program and, more recently, the 4-year Animal Science Dairy Concentration program. I have taught many courses in dairy production and coached the Dairy Judging and Dairy Challenge teams. It is hard to believe that I have been at MSU for almost 33 years. Had you told me in 1990 that I would spend my career working with students and dairy cows, I would have never believed it.