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BUILDING A SUSTAINABLE FOOD PROGRAM BETWEEN RURAL AND URBAN COMMUNITIES AS A LABORATORY FOR TRAINING FUTURE FOOD SYSTEM PROFESSIONALS

Investigators
Jolly-ballantine, J.
Institutions
University of Connecticut
Start date
2021
End date
2026
Objective
Objective #1: Train a culturally and economically diverse undergraduate student cohort (SCFS Fellows) in the complexity of food systems through undergraduate courses and summer internships. The new SCFS program at UConn supplements traditional, academic course work with intensive community-based internships and training in sustainable food production, social justice, social entrepreneurship, and hands-on systems thinking. We seek to enhance the social diversity of our cohort through paid fellowships creating an SCFS Fellows program. We will employ engaging, innovative pedagogy to train Fellows to think critically about the links between food security and racial justice.Objective #2: Train Fellows to develop and deliver an educational program in sustainable community food systems for 4-H youth in grades 3-5. Fellows will also develop mentorship, communication, and leadership skills through summer 4-H programming with elementary youth from a high poverty area of Hartford, CT. Fellows will introduce 4-H youth to an innovative, age-appropriate understanding of food security and racial justice, something that is not currently part of the UConn 4-H curriculum. Our curriculum will allow 4-H youth to share personal experiences thereby permitting 4-H youth and Fellows to learn from each other. 4-H youth will benefit from the hands on, social justice focus of the curriculum, and Fellows will benefit from development of hands on leadership opportunities.Objective #3: Prepare Fellows to enter the real-world as independent, culturally aware leaders and entrepreneurs with expertise in locally produced food from rural and urban areas in Connecticut. Fellows engaged in the program and educational activities described in Objectives #1 and #2 will have many of the underlying skills required of future food systems leaders. Our final objective is to train the students to put those knowledge and skills into action through training in entrepreneurship and the basics of non-profit operations. Fellows will apply these new skills to address a need of their internship site in the fall (Objective #1).
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
CONW-2020-09460
Accession number
1025946
Categories
Food Defense and Integrity
Education and Training