Posts Tagged: students
The agriculture industry’s future is secure, writer Melanie Turner reported, because young people have never been more interested in agriculture.
The bulk of this story is only available with a paid subscription to the Sacramento Business Journal.
An article by Ching Lee in today's Ag Alert focused on the effects of budget cuts on agricultural student programs at California universities. "Budget cuts have had a profound effect on all areas of the campus," Diane Ullman, associate dean for undergraduate academic programs at UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, told the reporter. She explained the college faces challenges keeping agricultural production facilities, instructional equipment and technologies updated to deliver hands-on education — even though the office has seen student applications increase by 70–80 percent.
Tom Baldwin, dean of UC Riverside College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, also commented on the challenges of serving students in the face of diminishing resources, saying the university is "moving heaven and earth" to do so.
The cuts are being felt at on-campus farms as well. Raoul Adamchak, of the UC Davis Student Farm, explained that the market garden generates its own income and provides a lesson to students on self-sustaining businesses. "Things cost money, and these are part of the expenses of farming, so it has to be factored in. They have to make decisions based on the cost of things and the returns," he said.
Peach association to major retailer: Buy U.S.-grown
Christine Souza, Ag Alert
The California Canning Peach Association has asked Target to consider California fruit for its Market Pantry-brand canned peaches, which are currently a product of China. Wal-Mart carries a comparable product made from California cling peaches, with a lower retail price.
Reporter Christine Souza sought expert commentary from Roberta Cook, UC Cooperative Extension marketing specialist at the Davis campus, on the current market for California cling peaches. "When you are talking about processed items, if another country can produce it a lot cheaper than you, then you will be vulnerable to competition. And consumer preferences have moved towards fresh. So [California cling-peach businesses] are hit by both factors," she told the reporter.
Related ANR News Blog post: Chinese farmers take a bite out of the California cling-peach market
The Associated Press this morning reported that enrollment in agriculture schools across the nation is growing, even though the number of farms tumbles.
Reporter David Mercer provided statistics from a survey of ag schools by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Enrollment in bachelor's degree programs in agriculture, the survey said, increased 21.8 percent from 2005 to 2008, from about 58,300 students to nearly 71,000.
The story gave specific information about the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, noting that in 2009 more than 5,490 students are enrolled in agricultural majors — a jump of 210 from a year earlier.
"I think that young people are recognizing all of the issues that surround our society that have to do with food, and I think there's a real interest in new ways of doing things and solving some of these problems," the story quoted Diane Ullman, a UC Davis associate dean for undergraduate academic programs.
A Monsanto spokesman told the reporter the company finds it hard to recruit people educated in science, in particular, because they "tend to get snatched up by medical and health care-related things." He said Monsanto has openings for 100 researchers at its headquarters in St. Louis.
A Texas A & M spokesman said every one of the university's poultry science graduates averaged five job offers.
UC Davis ag student