When 35 Aviagen customers from around the world gather in Huntsville, Ala., in June for the 51st Aviagen Production Management School, they won't be handed the hefty, fact-filled binders that students of previous schools carried with them during the month-long program - and then lugged back home.
The course materials, handouts and technical documentation those infamous binders always held will still be available -- just in a vastly more mobile and student-friendly format.
That's because this year, the Aviagen Production Management School is going digital. For the first time, the company will issue Apple iPad Mini tablets pre-loaded with school content. The tablets are small enough to slip into a jacket pocket, and they make it easy for students to refer to curriculum content as they listen to 45 experts from industry and academia, engage in eight to 10 hands-on, practical workshops, and visit 10 production facilities. Students will keep the iPads after graduating from the school.
"At the annual Aviagen Production Management School, we teach the most advanced techniques and best practices in poultry production management, so it's only natural that we should use state-of-the-art technology to deliver that knowledge," said Mark Wright, director of the Aviagen school. "Now students can have instant access to updated course content wherever they go - at school, on those long international flights home, or throughout their own production facilities. And by delivering this information digitally, we're using less paper, generating less waste, and supporting Aviagen's commitment to promote sustainability worldwide."
Using iPad Mini tablets as a learning platform also makes it easy for Aviagen to provide students with the most current course materials. Aviagen also is developing production tools specifically for use on iPad and iPad Mini tablets.
The Aviagen Production Management School offers Aviagen customers a chance to gain hands-on experience with virtually every facet of poultry production, including biosecurity, fertility, feed formulation and animal welfare. More than 1,500 poultry professionals from 62 countries have completed the program since 1967, when it was founded in Connecticut as the Arbor Acres Production Management School.