Monday, July 31

SU Land-Grant Campus holds first day of Inaugural Retreat

Beattra Wilson provides instructions during the first day of the SU Land-Grant Campus's Inaugural Administrative Organization and Strategic Planning Retreat at the SU Law Center on July 31, 2017.

Baton Rouge, La.The Southern University Agricultural Land-Grant Campus kicked off the first day of its ‘Inaugural Administrative Organization and Strategic Planning Retreat’ on July 31, 2017 at the SU Law Center.

Collaboration was the resounding theme of several departmental and program presentations on day one of the retreat, which is being held to provide an opportunity for the administrative staff to reform and reorganize the structure of the SU Land-Grant Campus for the next year.

Presentations on the Campus’s Southern Institute for Medicinal Plants and its Southern Institute for One Health, One Medicine provided insight as to how other Land-Grant Campus departments and programs can incorporate a venue for researchers, SU students and small farmers and gardeners from the community. Both humans and animals will benefit from these cross-collaborations of research, extension\outreach and teaching.

The day concluded with remarks by SU Land-Grant Campus Chancellor-Dean, Dr. Bobby R. Phills.

The retreat will run until August 2 and will include team building exercises, breakout sessions on an individual’s role in the collective vision, improving experiential learning for students and mission planning and implementation.

The SU Ag Center and the SU College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences together are called the Southern University Agricultural Land-Grant Campus.


Friday, July 28

SU Land-Grant Campus teaches youth about agriculture and Southern through Family & Youth Expo

Youth participants learn while having fun at Expo event
Baton Rouge, La. (July 28, 2017) – Nearly 60 youth participated in the Acadiana Family and Youth Expo hosted by the Southern University Land-Grant Campus at the Sustainable Agriculture Rural Development Institute (SARDI) in Opelousas on July 27. This year’s expo themed, “Cultivating the Next Generation of Ag Leaders,” attracted participants from the Acadiana Region including Iberia, St. Landry, Lafayette, Calcasieu and St. Martin Parishes, to enjoy educational activities, contests and games.  

Youth were involved in hands-on activities such as financial literacy, cooking demonstration, herb gardening, bio-fuel processing, fire prevention, drone demonstrations, and a basketball game. They also competed in Public Speaking and Creative Writing Competitions. In the Middle School category of the Public Speaking Contest, Devon Scott emerged as the sole first place winner. Nyah Hampton from St. Landry placed 1st in the High School group, followed by Alesia Francis from Lafayette and Brendalyn Jarius from Lafayette in 3rd place. Winners in the High School Creative Writing category were: Anjanelle Armstead from Calcasieu in 1st place, Nia Johnson from Iberia 2nd, and Mackenzie Therry of St. Landry in 3rd place.

SARDI is a satellite campus of the Southern University Ag Center housed in Opelousas, La. and directed by Mr. Antonio Harris. The Institute focuses on improving the socioeconomic well-being of citizens in rural communities within a ten-parish region of St. Landry, Acadia, Allen, Avoyelles, Beauregard, Evangeline, Lafayette, Pointe Coupee, St. Martin, and Vermillion Parishes.

The SU Ag Center and the SU College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences together are called the Southern University Agricultural Land-Grant Campus.


Wednesday, July 26

SU Land-Grant Campus launches SNAP-Ed Mobile App

SU Land-Grant SNAP-Ed mobile app
Baton Rouge, La. - Nutritionally Yours Program at the SU Land-Grant Campus has announced the release of a free mobile SNAP-Ed App available in Apple and Android stores for download. Search for “SU Ag snap ed” or “SU Ag Nutrition” in the app store. You can download, use and share the app with friends and family.

The app links directly to the Nutritionally Yours website with tons of information, including how to apply for SNAP.

SNAP is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly known as Food Stamps). It is part of the U.S. domestic hunger safety net and provides economic benefits to eligible, low-income individuals and families for food purchases. SNAP -Ed is the nutrition promotion and obesity-prevention component of SNAP.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) is funded by USDA Food and Nutrition Service.

CHEF Camp at SU Land-Grant Campus continues teaching youth cooking and social skills

Campers have fun while they cook 
Baton Rouge, La. (July 26, 2017) - The Southern University Land-Grant Campus continues a joint effort with the LSU AgCenter to immerse youth in cooking lessons in a summer camp titled, “Creating Healthy Enjoyable Foods,” or CHEF Camp.

The second session of the CHEF Camp for youth ages 12-15 is in full swing July through July 28. The camp teaches basic cooking principles and nutrition education to combat childhood obesity and related diseases. It also teaches social skills, food and kitchen safety. In addition to learning how to cook a meal, the youth played a game called "Fear Factor," where they were blind folded and had to identify the fruit or spice they were given to taste. Later, they made Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon Chips.

Camp lessons are based on basic cooking principles and nutrition education utilizing the USDA’s recommendations and guidelines.

For more information about the camp, contact Kiyana Kelly or Marquetta Anderson-Reynolds at (225) 389-3055 or email or


Tuesday, July 18

SARDI partners with SCORE to host monthly ‘Lunch & Learn’ Business Series

Event Flyer

Baton Rouge, La.The Sustainable Agriculture Rural Development Institute (SARDI) has partnered with the Acadiana SCORE chapter to host free monthly small-business ‘Lunch and Learn’ workshops to encourage economic development in the Acadiana region.

The first workshop, which will focus on Marketing 101, will be held on Thursday, July 20 at SARDI, 1209 Diesi St. in Opelousas, from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

The two-hour workshop will teach participants how to:      
  • ·         Choose the best advertising method for their business
  • ·         Clearly communicate digitally to your ideal customer
  • ·         Select and create marketing collateral
  • ·         Establish an advertising budget
  • ·         Fundamentals to devise a Marketing Plan

Tonia Askins, Louisiana District Director of SCORE Louisiana, will conduct the workshop and mentor small business owners.

To register for the ‘Lunch & Learn’ Series visit, contact SARDI at 337-943-2410 or email

Future workshops will covers topics ranging from customer service to finance.   
The Acadiana SCORE chapter is a non-profit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow and succeed by providing guidance and counseling in the eight parish area of Lafayette, St. Martin, St. Mary, Vermilion, St. Landry, Acadia, Evangeline and Iberia Parishes.

SARDI is a satellite campus of the Southern University Ag Center housed in Opelousas, La. The Institute focuses on improving the socioeconomic well-being of citizens in rural communities within a ten-parish region of St. Landry, Acadia, Allen, Avoyelles, Beauregard, Evangeline, Lafayette, Pointe Coupee, St. Martin, and Vermillion Parishes.

The SU Ag Center and the SU College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences together are called the Southern University Agricultural Land-Grant Campus.


Federal funding for Louisiana farmers impacted by 2016 floods

Baton Rouge, La. (July 18, 2017) – Reliable sources report that Louisiana farmers could soon see federal funding to recover any financial losses from the recent March and August floods of 2016. 

A $10 million grant is being funded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for farmers in 51 parishes who qualify. 
The funding will be administered by the Louisiana Department of Agriculture of Forestry, which has held meetings throughout the state to inform farmers of the guidelines and application process to receive some of the grant money.

Farmers must have crop loss totaling at least $10,000 and pre-storm revenue of $25,000 in the years since 2014 to be eligible.

Crop loss must amount to a minimum of $10,000 as calculated by the crop-loss calculator. Eligible crops include: cotton, corn, grain sorghum, rice, hay, soybeans, sweet potatoes, sugarcane, strawberries, and wheat. Crawfish and cattle are also included.

To review the guidelines, go to 

Applications will be available online July 26. 


Friday, July 14

Session one of CHEF Camp concludes at Southern University Land-Grant Campus

Campers learn to cut pizza hands-on

Teachers and students celebrate at the end of their week-long CHEF Camp
Baton Rouge, LA - The Southern University Land-Grant Campus collaborated with the LSU AgCenter to host a youth cooking school, “Creating Healthy Enjoyable Foods,” or CHEF for youth ages 9-11 from July 10-15. The second session of camp directed towards 12-15 year olds will take place on SU Campus July 24-28, 2017.

The camp is designed to teach basic cooking principles and nutrition education based on the USDA’s recommendations and guidelines, with the goal of combating childhood obesity and related diseases. It also teaches MyPlate, germ prevention, kitchen safety, and social skills.

“These camps are very useful in this day and time for children to learn skills they can use for life,” said Kiyana Kelly, Nutrition Educator at the SU Land-Grant Campus. “Especially learning how to prepare food safely using the microwave now that many parents work, and when kids get return from school they can still eat healthy.”

The mother of one camper expressed her satisfaction with the skills her daughter learned in camp. “Jayla is learning more about healthy eating and MyPlate with more information on cooking and eating healthy than before she came to camp,” said Liza Singleton. Jayla Singleton who attends LaSalle Elementary School chimed in, “It’s fun!”

From the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Emanuel Andrews, Community Outreach Coordinator, was on hand with games to keep the campers engaged in physical activity and to raise awareness about the importance of staying active in addition to eating healthy.

At the conclusion of the camp, family members participate in sampling food prepared by their students, who went home with certificates of completion, recipe books and other goodies to continue their journey of healthy living. The CHEF Camp concluded with Pizza, Mac and Cheese, and Smoothie in-a-Bag.

For more information about the camp, contact Kiyana Kelly or Marquetta Anderson-Reynolds at (225) 389-3055 or mail or

Click here to view photos from the East Baton Rouge Parish CHEF Camp.


Class VI of the Small Farmer Ag Leadership Institute takes a farm study tour to Houston

Baton Rouge, La. – Members of the 6th class of the Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Institute, advisors and SU Land-grant campus employees are on a three-day tour to explore agriculture in the greater Houston area, July 12-15, 2017.

The Southern University Land-Grant Campus offers an agricultural leadership training program to small farmers across the United States for the past 11 years. This two-year course of study, consists of training seminars, video lessons, agricultural enterprise visits and farm study tours.

SU Ag Institute tour group visits the George Bush Library and Museum while in Houston
The SU Land-Grant Campus is collaborating on this effort with the Southern University Law Center, Alcorn State University - Small Farm Development Center, Prairie View A & M University - Cooperative Extension Program and North Carolina A & T State University - Cooperative Extension Program to bring the Institute to the farmers in various locations.

The 1890 System developed the Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Training Institute to guide small, limited-resource and minority farmers through the process of becoming more competitive agricultural entrepreneurs. 

This project is supported by the Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers Competitive Grants Program of the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service, USDA.

For more information about the program, contact Dawn Mellion-Patin, PhD, director, Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Training Institute/Vice Chancellor for Extension and Outreach at 225-771-3532.
Additional information is available on our website at              

Thursday, July 13

Youth learn cooking skills at the SU Land-Grant CHEF Camp

Baton Rouge, La. – A Joint SU/LSU Ag Centers “Creating Healthy Enjoyable Foods” (C.H.E.F.) Camp, for boys and girls ages 9-11, is in full swing July 10-14 on the Southern University Land-Grant Campus. 

The Camp engages youth in a cooking, and learning about germ prevention, kitchen safety, and MyPlate, with a hands-on approach on preparing some healthy favorite dishes. Population opinion is that when the children cook, they enjoy eating their food. Today, they snacked as they cooked their pasta dish of Cheesy, Easy Mac. The snack of the day was Blue Corn Tortilla with a healthy topping to accompany it.

The next camp for youth ages 12 – 15 starts from July 24 – 28 on the SU Land-Grant Campus.

The camp is organized by Kiyana Kelly and Marquetta Anderson.

The Louisiana Delegation from SU Land-Grant Campus Explores the Citizenship Washington Focus

Citizenship Washington Focus youth from the SU Land-Grant Campus visit Capitol Hill

The Louisiana delegates pose for a photo with Representative Garrett Graves from Louisiana’s 6th District
Baton Rouge, La. - Dr. Tiffany Franklin, 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF) Coordinator at the Southern University Land-Grant Campus, and Ms. Tara Hollins, accompanied a delegation of six youth to the 2017 CWF in Washington D.C., July 10 -14.
While in DC, they have had the opportunity tour the US Congress, where they met Representative Cedric Richmond, from Louisiana's 2nd Congressional District, and had a personal, night tour of the Capital with Representative Garrett Graves from Louisiana’s 6th District.
The youth are in the process of finalizing their Community Action Plan, which will be carried out after they return to Louisiana.
This year’s delegates are Michael Boudreaux, Tyliya Pitts, and Michael Wicker, from the SU Lab School; Jaymya Jouber, A'mya Thomas, and Coby Pittman, from Park Ridge Academic Magnet School.

Citizenship Washington Focus is an educational conference for youth ages 15 to 19. Hosted at the National 4-H Center near Washington, DC, it gives youth the opportunity to explore, develop, and refine the civic engagement skills they need in order to become outstanding leaders.


Friday, July 7

BAYOU Phase IV students bid farewell to SU Land-Grant Campus

Baton Rouge, La. - On July 7, 2017, the 33 remaining participants in the BAYOU Program at the SU Land-Grant Campus returned home for the rest of the summer. Some of them will return in the fall and enroll in the agricultural sciences at Southern University.


Shining Stars drop by the SU Agricultural Land-Grant Campus

Dr. Mellion-Patin interacts with STARS campers during SU campus visit
Baton Rouge, La. – Shining stars from the neighborhood dropped by the SU Land-Grant Campus on July 7, 2017. More than 70 boys ranging from kindergarten to the 7th grade who are participating in the “Students That Are Reaching Success” (S.T.A.R.S.) Program at the Abounding Love Ministries in North Baton Rouge, paid the Campus a visit as part of their camp activity. 

The Vice Chancellor for Extension and Outreach, Dr. Dawn Mellion-Patin was on hand to welcome the students.

The STARS Camp offers a morning of reading and math classes to prepare campers academically for the next school year and an afternoon of enrichment activities such as Dance, Music, Arts and Crafts, Woodworks, Drama, Public-Speaking, African American History, Computer Literacy, and Foreign Language.  Also, Recreational activities with a week-long Sports Camp are other activities. 

Pastor Albert W. White, the founder and President of S.T.A.R.S. Enrichment Camp was with the youth group to gain knowledge on the agricultural programs offered by the Land-Grant Campus.  


Thursday, July 6

SU Land-Grant Campus Concludes BAYOU Phase IV

BAYOU students are poised for their research presentations

Chancellor-Dean Bobby R. Phills wishes a bright future for the BAYOU students
Baton Rouge, La. – For the 38 participants in the Beginning Agricultural Youth Opportunities Unlimited (BAYOU) program, today marks the conclusion of the five-week summer experiential learning program with the SU Land-Grant Campus family.

During their stay, they conducted research, took trips and had fun while learning.

On July 6, 2017, the remaining 33 students in the program presented information on their research activities in the areas of Agricultural Economics, Urban Forestry, Child Development, Apparel Merchandising and Textiles, Human Nutrition and Food, Animal Science and Plant and Soil Sciences.

The Chancellor-Dean of the Land-Grant Campus, Dr. Bobby R. Phills expressed his pride in the students’ growth in his closing remarks.

“I am impressed with your research presentations.  You can compete with college students,” said Phills.

Dr. Phills also expressed his gratitude to the parents for allowing them the opportunity to experience life on campus this summer. He also invited the students back as SU students in the agricultural sciences.

Upcoming high school senior Sarah Neal says she plans to take Dr. Phills up on his offer. 

The Winnsboro, La. native is already planning to participate in the BAYOU program next year and ultimately earn a degree in Agricultural Economics.

"I came to BAYOU to learn about the different majors and opportunities available in the field of agriculture," said Neal. "I would like learn more about agricultural economics to help grow and build the economies of rural communities through entrepreneurship," she added.

The BAYOU program provides an opportunity for high school seniors and incoming college freshman to gain first-hand knowledge about career opportunities in Agriculture, Family and Consumer Sciences, Business or the natural sciences.

To qualify, students must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5 and have completed 11th grade. The students’ live in the dormitories on the Southern University Baton Rouge campus and are permitted to go home on the weekends.

Click here to view photos from the event.