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Fresno State and the University of São Paulo have agreed to an official memorandum of agreement to broaden their cooperative agriculture student, faculty and staff exchange programs.

Fresno State President Joseph I. Castro and Dr. Sandra Witte, dean of the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology at Fresno State, signed the agreement on campus March 1 with three University of São Paulo leaders: Dr. Raul Machado Neto, provost for international affairs; Dr. Luiz Gustavo Nussio, agriculture dean, and Dr. Durval Dourado Neto, agriculture vice dean. Continue reading

by Katherine Ralston, Elizabeth Beaulieu, Jeffrey Hyman, Matthew Benson, and Michael Smith
USDA Economic Research Service

What Is the Issue?

local foods
USDA’s Farm to School Program was established in 2012 to improve access to local foods in eligible schools through grants and technical assistance. Farm-to-school programs bring locally or regionally produced foods into school cafeterias; provide hands-on learning activities such as school gardening, farm visits, and culinary classes; and integrate food-related education into the regular, standards-based classroom curriculum. Promotional activities and experiential learning also serve as an additional form of nutrition education to increase student awareness and interest in healthier foods. Frequent use of local foods in school meals has also been suggested as a way to expand the market for local agricultural producers. Continue reading

farm day
Farm Day in the City is this week! This annual event has been sponsored by the Kern County Farm Bureau since 1984. Over the years, this event has grown from being held at one school with several children in attendance to over 4,500 children at the Kern County Fairgrounds. The goal of the event is to acquaint children with agriculture and its importance in our community and state. Children in grades 2nd, 3rd, and 4th are invited from private, public, and home schools in Kern County. There is no cost to the schools and the entire program is funded through contributions and the Kern County Farm Bureau. Continue reading

Fresno County Farm and Nutrition Day
More than 4,000 third-grade students, teachers and chaperones from throughout Fresno County will participate in the 12th annual Farm & Nutrition Day at the Big Fresno Fairgrounds, located at Butler and Chance avenues, on Friday, March 17, from 9 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Continue reading

colleges universities funding land grant
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced $1.7 million in funding to build research capacity at land-grant tribal colleges and universities. Funding is made through NIFA’s Tribal Colleges Research Grants Program (TCRGP).

“1994 land-grant universities represent a critically important part of our nation’s construct of academic institutions providing the leadership to address nutritional security amongst tribal populations while protecting our environment and natural resources, and at the same time ensuring young people are receiving education that prepares them for the workforce,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. Continue reading

scholarship
World Ag Expo and E.M. Tharp, Inc. have teamed up again to provide the “We Believe in Growing” scholarship, which supports local high school students who will be attending four-year universities to major in an agricultural field. This year’s winners, Grace Guthrie and Derrick Nunes, will each receive $2,500 scholarships to be renewed up to four years, totaling $10,000 per student.

“We are thrilled to join again with World Ag Expo to support agricultural education,” said Casey Tharp, Vice President of E.M. Tharp, Inc. “There is so much ambition and talent within our younger generation. I am optimistic about the future of agriculture, because of students like Derrick and Grace.” Continue reading

support science workforce
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture announced availability of $8.8 million in funding to support agricultural science education at Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). The Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) Education Grants Program promotes and strengthens HSI programs that attract, retain, and graduate outstanding students capable of enhancing the nation’s food, agricultural, natural resource, and human sciences work force. Continue reading


The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced $18.9 million in funding for eligible 1890 land-grant colleges and universities to obtain or improve agricultural and food sciences facilities and equipment. The 1890 Facilities Grant Program helps the eligible institutions educate the future workforce in the food, agricultural and human sciences job sectors.

“This funding signals our ongoing commitment to create future leaders and skilled professionals in the field of agricultural innovation,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. Continue reading

Valley's Gold
The Fresno County Farm Bureau (FCFB) got a chance to show people around the nation what its award winning “Valley’s Gold” television show is all about. AgNet West caught up with a group at the American Farm Bureau Federation Conference (AFBF) earlier this month. Continue reading

tharp
World Ag Expo and E.M. Tharp, Inc. have teamed up again to provide the “We Believe in Growing” scholarship, created to support agricultural education. High school seniors from Madera, Fresno, Tulare, Kings and Kern counties are encouraged to apply by January 20, 2017, to be considered. A $10,000 scholarship will be awarded to two students who attend a four-year university to major in an agricultural field. The scholarships will be disbursed over four years at $2,500 per year. Continue reading

agricultural
The California Department of Food and Agriculture has awarded $257,000 to four organizations for projects that enhance agricultural education and leadership opportunities for students, teachers and youth under the 2016 California Special Interest Plate (CalAgPlate) grant program.

“The CalAgPlate program helps to support agricultural education and leadership opportunities,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “Every purchase and renewal of a CalAgPlate provides funding for activities that enrich the lives of students through exposure to farming and ranching across the state.” Continue reading

women
Despite earning 44 percent of the doctorates in agricultural sciences, women hold just 23 percent of the tenure-track faculty positions at U.S. land-grant universities, according to a new study by the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. Continue reading

agriculture opportunities
Everett Griner talks about the vast opportunities in agriculture related careers in today’s Agri View. Hear Everett’s report and learn more. →

NASA

Astronaut and 4-H alumna Peggy Whitson

NASA and 4-H, a program of USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), are teaming up with Astronaut and 4-H alumna Peggy Whitson to inspire youth to develop life skills for success inside and outside the classroom. The online resource hub “Expeditionary Skills for Life,” will feature lessons and content built around the skills needed to become an astronaut that also help students succeed across the board. Continue reading

Promote Agriculture Education and Connect Young People to Careers of Tomorrow

national
Leaders of National 4-H Council and the American Farm Bureau Federation announced a newly established partnership during the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the two groups.

Recognizing the need to support agricultural education and highlight the impact ag plays in our daily lives, National 4-H Council and AFBF aim to ignite the desire of young people to embrace agriculture, cultivate innovation and empower them with opportunities to improve the world around them. Through collaboration on thought leadership and ag literacy initiatives, both organizations are committed to better link young people to agriculture of today and tomorrow. Continue reading

high school ag-graduate
A new study shows the agriculture industry adds nearly 60,000 jobs annually, yet only three percent of high school and college students are aware of the job prospects in agriculture. Continue reading

agriculture education
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced grants to support public secondary schools, non-profits, community and junior colleges, and four-year colleges and universities to engage K-14 students in the food, agriculture, natural resources, and human (FANH) sciences. These awards, totaling about $841,250, are made through NIFA’s Secondary Education, Two-Year Post-secondary Education, and Agriculture in the K-12 Classroom Challenge Grants (SPECA) program. Continue reading

youth
Everett Griner talks about America’s foremost youth meeting in today’s Agri View. Hear Everett’s report and learn more. →

environmental education
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded a total of $244,428 in environmental education grants to the Plumas Audubon Society in Quincy, Calif., Education Outside in San Francisco, Calif., and the Napa County Resource Conservation District in Napa, Calif. The grant funds will be used to educate students on the effects of climate change on wildlife, help elementary students understand the science behind their local watersheds, and to engage high-school students in stewardship, conservation, and natural resource management issues in their local community. Continue reading

schools lunch
Recognizing the need to improve sourcing of American-grown food products by U.S. schools, National Farmers Union (NFU) applauded the introduction of the “American Food for American Schools Act of 2016.” The legislation aims to enforce provisions of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act that require school nutrition providers to purchase domestically produced and processed foods, to the extent practicable. Continue reading

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