Friday, February 17

The Land-Grant Campus holds Work-Based Learning Conference at LSU Eunice

Antonio Harris and Kayla Fontenot speak to 11th and 12th graders during the Sustainable Agricultural, Rural Development Institute's (SARDI) 1st annual Work-Based Learning Conference on Feb. 2 at the LSU Eunice campus.  

Baton Rouge, La. – The Sustainable Agricultural, Rural Development Institute (SARDI) – formerly known as the Southwest Center for Rural Initiatives - participated in the 1st Annual Work-Based Learning Conference on Feb. 2 at the Louisiana State University at Eunice (LSUE) campus.

Approximately 60 Juniors and Seniors from Opelousas Senior High School’s Magnet Academy of Biomedical Sciences in Opelousas, La. attended the conference, which was held to further prepare students for their college and workforce entrances.

Conference breakout sessions included:
•    Resume Writing
•    Dressing for Success
•    Soft Skills
•    Tackling FASFA
•    Finding the Right College
•    Show Me the Money
•    Surviving the First Year

SARDI led a presentation that targeted areas such as professional dress and soft skills in the workplace. Kayla Fontenot, a Youth Agent at the Southern University Land-Grant Campus, covered professional dress as well as workplace readiness skills during the session.

Antonio Harris, Research Associate and Director of SARDI, wrapped the session up with personal experiences that were related to professional dress and workplace readiness.

Chasity Johnson, Outreach Program Assistant, sat in to assist with the audiovisual operation and was astounded by the response of the students and thought they were very receptive to the information provided.

Students from SARDI’s ‘Youth Ambassadors for Healthy Living’ Program also participated in the conference by dressing in professional and non-professional attire and performing skits about professional dress and workplace readiness.

The entire SARDI staff agreed that the conference was much-needed and it provided students with information to assist them as they enter their college and workforce years.

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SU Board of Supervisors votes to approve new logo and mission statement for the Ag Land-Grant Campus

Logo redesign for the SU Land-Grant Campus

Baton Rouge, La. – The Southern University Board of Supervisors voted to approve a logo redesign and revision to the mission statement for the Southern University Land-Grant Campus during their regular meeting on Friday, February 17, 2017.

A document in the February 2017 Board of Supervisors packet stated that the, “rebranding efforts for the Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center (SU Ag Center) and the College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences (CAFCS) include redesigning the current logo and updating the mission statement to reflect the recent joining of these two entities to become the Southern University Land-Grant Campus.”

Documents went on to say that, “the new logo is encased in a circle which represents the interconnected nature of each aspect of the Land-Grant Campus….Each arm of the tripartite land-grant mission of Teaching, Research, and Extension is represented in the triangle. The apex symbolizes that the Land-Grant Campus, together with the Southern University System, is moving onward and upward, contributing to the advancement of all mankind.”

The revised mission statement reads, “The Land-Grant Campus of the Southern University and A&M College System embraces a mission consistent with the University's tripartite mission of teaching, research, and extension/public service. Our land-grant role is to educate, train and mentor a cadre of highly skilled students and professionals to prepare them for a highly technological and globalized workforce. To effectively serve the agricultural and food science industry, we conduct basic and applied research and disseminate information statewide. This allows us to better serve the citizens of Louisiana in a manner that is useful in addressing their scientific, technological, social, economic and cultural needs and enhance their overall quality of life.”

The board also approved the renaming of the SU Ag Center’s satellite campus in Opelousas from the Southwest Center for Rural Initiatives to the Sustainable Agricultural, Rural Development Institute (SARDI), and the establishment of the Southern Institute for One Health, One Medicine (SIOHOM), which will serve as an umbrella organization that promotes interdisciplinary research, teaching, and outreach/extension to improve the lives both humans and animals.

More information will be forth coming.


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Thursday, February 16

SU Ag Center to host 7th annual La. Small Farmer Conference


Baton Rouge, La. - Small farmers from throughout the state will gather at the Southern University Ag Center March 16-18 to attend the 7th annual Louisiana Small Farmer Conference.
                                                
The three-day conference, themed “Innovations and Resilience for Louisiana Small Family Farms,” is designed to educate, provide expanded awareness of educational opportunities, USDA programs and services and other resources to help small farmers stay in business.

Registration for the conference is complimentary for anyone who submits their registration form by Friday, March 3. On-site registration will begin at 8 a.m. daily.

Conference speakers will include Jay Grymes, Chief Meteorologist at WAFB News Channel 9; Brandon Davis, Ag Labor Attorney at Phelps Dunbar, LLC.; Leonard Jordan, Associate Chief for Conservation at the National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and Brennan Washington, Minority Farmer/ Outreach Specialist at the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SARE).

Session during the conference will include:
·         Drone Demonstrations
·         Grant Writing
·         Soil Health
·         Farm Labor
·         Marketing

This event is the ideal venue for new and beginning farmers, small and urban farmers, agricultural business owners, community leaders, backyard gardeners and community based organizations.

Other events occurring during the conference will include the Louisiana Living Legends Banquet, which honors individuals who have made significant contributions to Southern University in the areas of Agriculture, Family and Consumer Sciences, and the graduation ceremony for the 2016 Class of the Louisiana Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Institute.

To register, visit http://www.suagcenter.com/small-farmers or contact Kelli Hollins at 225-771-2242 or via e-mail at kelli_hollins@suagcenter.com.  

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Wednesday, February 15

USDA Reminds Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi about Disaster Assistance Programs

Baton Rouge, La. – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reminds farmers and ranchers, families and small businesses that could potentially be affected by the recent storms that USDA has several programs that provide assistance before, during and after disasters. USDA staff in the regional, State and county offices in the states of Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi are ready to help.

USDA encourages residents and small businesses in the potential impact zones to contact the following offices to meet their individual needs:
Property and Shelter; Food Safety and Food Assistance; Crop and Livestock Loss; and Community Recovery Resources.

USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture provides support for disaster education through the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN).

For complete details and eligibility requirements regarding USDA's disaster assistance programs, contact a local USDA Service Center (http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app). More information about USDA disaster assistance (http://www.usda.gov/documents/fact-sheet-usda-programs-assist-individuals-small-businesses.pdf) as well as other disaster resources is available on the USDA Disaster Resource Center website. In a continuing effort to better serve the public, USDA has developed a new and improved central resource for disaster related materials. In partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other disaster-focused organizations, USDA created a Disaster Resource Center (http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?navid=disaster-help) website, utilizing a new online searchable knowledgebase. This knowledgebase is a collection of disaster-related resources that are powered by agents with subject-matter expertise. The Disaster Resource Center website and web tool now provide an easy access point to find USDA disaster information and assistance.

Full details available at USDA website. 

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SU Ag Center Youth Clubs Learn to Spread Love as a Noble Deed

 Walter Lashell Sr. & Kim Hebert enjoying Love Fest 2017 despite their situation
Baton Rouge, La. – On Saturday, February 11, the SU Ag Center’s Jaguar Leader (Jag Lead) Club, and Outstanding Mature Girlz (OMG) Club served nearly 200 “Bags of Love” to homeless individuals under the Trevor J. Sims Memorial Bridge. The club members traveled from St. Helena & Tangipahoa Parishes to participate in Love Fest 2017 as part of the clubs monthly service focus, which is knowledge. Club members were introduced to a pressing issue that plagues the capital city, and that is homelessness.  For the very first time students from both parishes were able to witness what life looks like when individuals do not have anywhere to turn for resources.  Students also conducted an interview with homeless, 41-year old, Walter Lashell Sr., to gain knowledge on how someone could reach such deprived conditions.

Lashell said, “I moved here from Norfolk, Virginia, and I lost my job. ‘People have a preconceived notion that we’re looking for handouts, but I’m looking for a hand-up.”  Lashell also stated that he and his companion had only been residing underneath the Trevor J. Sims Bridge for a little over a month, but he’s still optimistic.  Many club members were shocked that Baton Rouge has such a huge homeless population, and discussed ways they could become the voice of reason to help eradicate such awful conditions. Kentwood High Magnet School (OMG) Club Member Marla Mcknight said, “I’ve learned that homelessness can happen to anybody, sometimes even the educated are affected.”
Love Fest is an annual celebration held on the second Saturday in February.  This event is essentially used to help the homeless population take their minds off their temporary situations for one day, while also helping them to seek solutions to put them back on their feet.  Club members also passed out hygiene kits, and hand-crafted Valentine’s Day cards that simply read, “I love you!”

For information on how to join a club, contact Nicolette Gordon at nicolette_gordon@suagcenter.com

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Deadline for the 23rd SU Annual Black History Quiz Bowl is Looming

Baton Rouge, La - The Southern University Ag Center and College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences are set for the 2017 Black History Quiz Bowl. The 23rd annual event will be held in the auditorium at Southern University Ag Center on Tuesday, February 21, at 3 pm

All students are eligible to participate. Teams (4 members each) must register by submitting a roster to obandele@cox.net no later than Friday, Feb. 17. The roster may also include an alternate member.  Rules and study guide are available here or at http://bit.ly/2jIH7zG

Teams may register at the College of Agricultural, Family, and Consumer Science Dean’s Office in Fisher Hall rm. 102 or by emailing rosters to obandele@cox.net.  Please hurry, time is running out!

This event is organized by Owusu Bandele, Professor Emeritus, SU Ag Center. He can be reached via email at obandele@cox.net

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Tuesday, February 14

SU Ag Center & College of Ag. Set to Host Medical Marijuana Town Hall Meeting


Baton Rouge, La. – The Southern University Land-Grant Campus - consisting on the SU Ag Center and College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences - will host a Medical Marijuana Town Hall Meeting on February 23, 2017 at 2 p.m. in the Southern University Ag Center – A. O. Williams Hall, 181 B. A. Little Drive in Baton Rouge, La.

The meeting will provide an overview of the Land-Grant Campus' medical marijuana venture.

Potential vendors and the public at large are invited to attend the Town Hall. The event is free.

Individuals must pre-register to attend the meeting by visiting www.suagcenter.com/townhall.

The Land-Grant Campus is requesting that all questions from vendors regarding the Medical Marijuana Program be emailed in advance to Dr. Janana Snowden at, janana_snowden@suagcenter.com. The deadline to submit questions will be 12 p.m. on February 21, 2017. All questions received will be addressed during the Town Hall.

For additional information, contact Dr. Snowden or LaKeeshia Lusk at 225-771-2242.
 
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Monday, February 13

National Agriculture Day 2017 Scheduled for March 21

Celebrate National Ag Day 2017
Baton Rouge, La. - The Southern University Agricultural Research & Extension Center and College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences (the Land-Grant Campus) will be hosting its annual National Ag Day celebration on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 from 9:00 A.M. 1:00 P.M. This year’s theme is “Food for Life.” National Ag Day is a nation-wide celebration where individuals and institutions recognize the importance of agriculture and how it relates to everyday life.

National Ag Day recognizes and celebrates the abundance provided by American agriculture. Join us on March 21 to show your appreciation to all those in the agriculture industry responsible for feeding over seven billion mouths every day.

Ag Day wants to help young people acknowledge and consider career opportunities in the agriculture, food and fiber industries.

Youth and adults are invited to come and experience live animal demonstrations, food demonstrations, technology and more at Southern University in Baton Rouge. Students will learn how agriculture impacts their daily living and how to sustain healthy living for life through food. The importance of the food and agricultural industry and its contribution statewide, nationally, and globally will be discussed with Ag Day participants. Presentations in relevant areas will be made by university faculty, staff, students and other community partners.

This event will be held at Southern University F.G. Clark Activity Center - SU mini dome, Baton Rouge, La. We look forward to your participation!

For more information and to RSVP, please contact Dr. Renita W. Marshall at (225)771-0252.

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Friday, February 10

SU Ag Center VC teaches youth about agriculture, ways to protect the environment

Vice Chancellor Johnson interacting with youth in school
Baton Rouge, La - The Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center is exposing youth at all levels of education to high paying careers in agriculture while seeking prospective students for the College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences. Dr. Andra Johnson, Vice Chancellor for Research and Technology Development at the Southern University Ag Center jumped at the chance to interact with youth at the Baton Rouge Center for Visual and Performing Arts earlier in February, 2017. During the Student Career Day, Dr. Johnson discussed with a class of 2nd graders his lucrative job based on his agricultural science degree.  He also taught them where samples of waste should be placed to reduce negative impact on the environment. Read more at the BRCVPA blog page or click here: http://www.brcvpa.com/blog/career-talk-in-ms-cruzs-class.

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The date for Annual Black History Quiz Bowl has changed to Feb. 21

Baton Rouge, La - The joint Southern University Ag Center and College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences 2017 Black History Quiz Bowl will be held in the auditorium at Southern University Ag Center on Tuesday, February 21, at 3 pm

All students are eligible to participate. Teams (4 members each) must register by submitting a roster to obandele@cox.net no later than Friday, Feb. 17. The roster may also include an alternate member.  Rules and study guide are available here or at https://goo.gl/9PKzf2

Teams may register at the College of Agricultural, Family, and Consumer Science Dean’s Office in Fisher Hall; at the SU Ag Center front desk; or they can email rosters to obandele@cox.net

Plaques will be awarded to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place teams, and all participants will receive a book by or about some aspect of the Black experience at the end of the event. 

This event is organized by Owusu Bandele, Professor Emeritus, SU Ag Center. He can be reached via email at obandele@cox.net


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Thursday, February 2

Save the date for SU & LSU Ag Centers joint Small Ruminant Field Day

Flyer
Baton Rouge, LA – The Southern University Ag Center, and the LSU AgCenter, will host a joint small ruminant field day on April 29 from 8:00 am - 2:30 p.m. at Maurice A. Edmond Livestock Arena, 14600 Scenic Highway, Baton Rouge, LA.

For more information contact: Sebhatu Gebrelul (225) 771-3841; sebhatu_gebrelul@suagcenter.com; Renita Marshall (225) 771-0252; Renita_marshall@suagcenter.com
                                                                                                                                                      
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SU Ag Center & College of Ag set for 23rd Annual Black History Quiz Bowl

Competition was stiff at 2016 Quiz Bowl
Baton Rouge, La - The Southern University Ag Center and College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences are set for the 2017 Black History Quiz Bowl. The 23rd annual event will be held in the auditorium at Southern University Ag Center on Tuesday, February 21, at 3 pm

All students are eligible to participate. Teams (4 members each) must register by submitting a roster to obandele@cox.net no later than Friday, Feb. 17. The roster may also include an alternate member.  Rules and study guide are available here or at http://bit.ly/2jIH7zG

Teams may register at the College of Agricultural, Family, and Consumer Science Dean’s Office in Fisher Hall; at the SU Ag Center front desk; or they can email rosters to obandele@cox.net

Plaques will be awarded to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place teams, and all participants will receive a book by or about some aspect of the Black experience at the end of the event. 

This event is organized by Owusu Bandele, Professor Emeritus, SU Ag Center. He can be reached via email at obandele@cox.net

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Southwest Center for Rural Initiatives set to host Community & School Based Gardening Workshop

Event Flyer

Baton Rouge, La. – The Southwest Center for Rural Initiatives (SCRI) - a satellite campus of the Southern University Ag Center – will host a Community and School Based Gardening Workshop on Saturday, Feb. 11 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. at the SCRI, 1209 Diesi Street, in Opelousas, La.

School and community garden coordinators, small and large farmers and backyard gardeners are invited to attend the workshop, which is free and open to the public.

The workshop will focus on the topics of:
  • Soil Preparation tips
  • Greenhouse maintenance
  • The benefits of hoop houses and raised beds

Attendees will also have the opportunity to participate in hands-on activities that include:
  • Seedling Preparation
  • Transplanting Seedlings

     “This workshop will teach school and community garden organizers how to grow vegetables from the seed to a seedling,” said Mila Berhane, Senior Research Associate at the SU Ag Center. “We will also provide attendees with seedlings that they can use to prepare for their spring garden.”

For more information or to register, contact Kayla Fontenot via phone at 337-943-2410 or email her at kayla_fontenot@suagcenter.com.

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Monday, January 30

SU Ag Center to host a Small Business Development Training in Franklinton, La.

Event Flyer

Baton Rouge, La. – The Center for Rural and Small Business Development (CRSBD) at the Southern University Ag Center will host a small business development training from 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 2 at the Franklinton Chamber of Commerce, 211 11th Ave., in Franklinton, La.

“This is the ideal training for anyone who is interested in starting a small business or for current small business owners who want to learn how to maximize their businesses,” said Eual Hall, CRSBD Business Development Specialist.

The training, which is free and open to the public, will cover the topics of creating and understanding business financial statements, business etiquette and marketing techniques.

For more information or to reserve a seat, contact Eual Hall at 225-771-4105 or Linda Crain, Director of the Franklinton Chamber of Commerce at 985-839-5822.

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Tuesday, January 24

SU Ag Center Nutrition Educators partner with Community Organizations to host Nutrition and Wellness Symposium

Group photo

Attendees doing yoga.

Baton Rouge, La. – The Land-Grant Campus’ Nutrition Education staff partnered with the Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church's Health Care Ministry and the Susan G. Komen Foundation to host a Nutrition and Wellness Symposium.

The event was held on January 14, 2017 at the Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church.

Marquetta L. Anderson, East Baton Rouge Parish Chair, Kiyana E. Kelly, East Baton Rouge Nutrition Educator and Extension Associates Stephanie M. Elwood and Ellen C. McKnight presented nutrition topics on:

MyPlate Vs MyPreferences
Eating with the Seasons
The Benefits of Gardening
Go, Slow and Whoa Food

Symposium attendees, who ranged from adolescents to seniors, were engaged and eager to learn. Activities included yoga, fitness sessions and herb and container garden planting.

For more information about the Land-Grant Campus’s nutrition education programs, contact us at 225-771-2242 or via e-mail at ellen_mcknight@suagcenter.com.

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Monday, January 23

SU Ag Center kicks-off its 2017 Youth Programs with Vision Circle Parties



Baton Rouge, La. – On Wednesday, January 11th the Southern University Ag Center hosted a Vision Circle Party for the Outstanding Mature Girlz (O.M.G.) Club at Kentwood High Magnet School.  There were 43 young ladies in attendance, analyzing ways to manage personal and material resources to achieve their personal goals in 2017.

Vision Circles are visual representations of what an individual envisions for their life. Individuals are encourage to use personal photos or visual materials to define their year-long aspirations and goals. 

“This year we chose to play off the cyber lingo hashtag for our theme, which was #RealLifeGoals, it’s just a fun way to keep the girls talking about their real life goals,” said SU Ag Center’s Assistant Area Agent, Nicolette Gordon.

Club members were encourage to complete their Vision Circles and also participate in a contest where they could upload their Vision Circle to Instagram in an effort to win $25 toward one of their ‘Just for Fun’ goals.

The next vision board party is scheduled to take place at St. Helena College & Career Academy at the end of January.

For more information about the O.M.G. Club, contact Nicolette Gordon in the Tangipahoa Parish Extension Office at 985-748-9381, or in the St. Helena Parish Extension Office at 225-222-4136.

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Thursday, January 19

SU Ag Center hosts 74th Annual Livestock Show


Meat purchases are now available

Baton Rouge, La. – The Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center’s 74th Annual State Livestock & Poultry Show will be held March 2 - 4, 2017 at the Maurice A. Edmond Livestock Arena, Hwy. 61 North, in Baker, La.

Nearly 200 young farmers are registered to participant in the show. These young farmers will show animals, some nearly twice their weight, that have either won or were showcased in a parish competition.

Judges will name the state champions of the show in the various breeds of cattle, hogs, sheep, lamb, goats and poultry. Winners will receive premiums, ribbons, rosettes, silver platters and trophy belt buckles.

“This year we are working on revamping the poultry category of the show,” said Harold Mellieon, Jr., Ph.D., Director of Livestock Programs and Assistant Specialist of Animal Science. “We will have about 25 youth participants from four parishes showing poultry during the livestock show and we are looking forward to increasing the number of participants showing poultry in the show next year.”

The Livestock Show Office is currently accepting pre-orders of non-processed choice meats from various livestock. All proceeds from meat sales go directly to participating youth as a reward for their hard work and financial investment. The following meat choices and quantities are available:

·         One whole beef $2,000
·         One half beef $1,000
·         One-fourth beef $500
·         One whole pork $225
·         One whole lamb $200
·         One whole goat is $175

There is a processing fee that is not included in the original cost of the meat. All purchases must be paid by money order or check and made payable to the Southern University Ag Center Livestock Show, prior to picking up the meat from the slaughter house.

Those who don’t pre-order their meat are invited to make a purchase during the show’s ‘Junior Auction Sale’ on Saturday, March 4 beginning at 9:30 a.m. at the Maurice A. Edmond Livestock Arena.

The office will deliver the meat to two locations, either the Cutrer Slaughter House in Kentwood (985) 229-2478 or Rouchers in Plaquemine (225) 687-4258.

Donations to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank are also welcome. 

Since 1943, Southern University has continued the tradition of providing an opportunity for youth throughout the state to gain valuable knowledge and skills at the Annual State Livestock and Poultry Show. The Livestock Show provides a venue for youth to showcase their animals, develop entrepreneurship skills, build character and receive leadership training.

For more information on the SU Ag Center’s Livestock Show, how to participate in the show or to purchase meat, visit http://www.suagcenter.com/livestock-programs or contact the Livestock Show Office at 225.771.5270 or 225.771.6208.


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