Dr. Rose Hayden-Smith, UC Observer, creator and chief contributor, kicks off the March speaker series at Foothill Technology High School in Ventura.
Kurt Miller, health, geography and world history teacher at Foothill also oversees the freshman grade level project-Ventura Eats. Over the spring semester, students will explore an aspect of our local food system that inspires them and create a documentary. Students are encouraged to interview professionals in the agricultural community. "Not all students have access to transportation and can get out there" stated Miller. To support his efforts and those of the students, the HAREC education team coordinated a speakers series that meets at the high school on Fridays in the months of March and April. Speakers provide a 20 minute presentation and entertain questions from the students. University of California Cooperative Extension-Ventura County researchers in agriculture and natural resources have graciously volunteered their time to this effort. These professionals live and work in the area they serve and can provide science based agricultural information and resources to the students. The topics will range from bees in agriculture to water and drought to chemicals in agriculture and much more.
Over 150 ninth graders crowded in to hear Hayden-Smith's dynamic presentation last Friday. Her intent was to give students a starting point by presenting an overview of the local food system, answer question, provide resources, and inspire them to launch their own research.
Author - Youth, Families and Communities Education Program Manager