Students from Dr. David Zonderman’s HI 591 Museum Studies class this Fall Semester worked with key team members of NC State’s beloved Howling Cow ice cream to present a history of the Howling Cow brand and dairy farming both on campus and in North Carolina as a whole.
The “Think and Moo” exhibit explores North Carolina State University’s longstanding connections to dairy farming and ice cream production both on and off campus. Highlights include an early map of the campus depicting a dairy farm where Reynolds Coliseum is now located, information about the rebranding of NC State ice cream into Howling Cow, and stories from individual students about the impact the Dairy Enterprise System at NC State has had on their lives. Additionally, a variety of artifacts including a 3D printed facsimile of an old NC State milk carton are on display for students, faculty, and staff to see.
Kelly Arnold, the Curator for the exhibit, came up with the idea of researching this topic while eating a pint of Howling Cow ice cream after a long day of classes. Starting her research with her favorite ice cream, she soon learned that Howling Cow was connected to a much deeper history of dairy farming on campus. In October, the Museum Studies class met to present their exhibit proposals and vote for the winning idea: “Think and Moo.” For two weeks members of the class worked within either the Artifacts, Design, Text Panels, or Programming Team to produce specific parts of the exhibit. After a class trip out to the NC State Dairy Farm and Randleigh Dairy Heritage Museum, they all came together to put up the exhibit as it stands in Withers Hall today.
Members from across the NC State community gathered on December 1st for opening night of the exhibit. After short remarks from Dr. Zonderman, Kelly Arnold, and Alex Ives, members of the class, tore down the wrapping paper concealing the exhibit. With the exhibit revealed, attendees enjoyed refreshments, including Howling Cow ice cream, while they took in the information displayed in the exhibit. Two lucky students even won Howling Cow themed prizes after matching pictures of dairy cows to their breed names in a fast-paced game of Kahoot.
Members of the class who worked on the exhibit included Nicole Ackman, Connor Clancy, Miranda Clinton, Margot Cook, Henry Crew, Morgan Douglas, Calee Eisenhuth, Conor McGuffin, DeAsia Noble, Becky Passner, Alexa Roland, Mary Schrader, Emma Vadney, and Jim Wrenn. Special thanks goes to Alex Ives, Dairy Education Coordinator, and Carl Hollifield, Director of the Dairy Enterprise System for their assistance on this project.
“Think and Moo” is currently on display in Withers Hall at 101 Lampe Drive at NC State University.