Monday, October 15

SU Land-Grant Campus holds a successful Listening Session in White Castle

The Southern University Land-Grant Campus held a Listening Session in the Town of White Castle on Oct. 9. Information gathered during the session will be used to implement strategies, seminars and workshops to aid the community. 

Baton Rouge, La. – Nearly 50 Iberville Parish residents along with Southern University Land-Grant Campus and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) employees attended a Listening Session on October 9 at the Town of White Castle’s Community Center.

The event, which was hosted by the SU Land-Grant Campus and the USDA, was held to hear the needs and concerns of the town’s citizens. Information gathered during the session will be used to implement strategies, seminars and workshops to aid the community.

“The whole intent of the listening session is to listen to what the citizens need and figure out how to take care of those needs,” said Bobby R. Phills, Ph.D., Chancellor-Dean of the Southern University Land-Grant Campus.

The session consisted of a panel of Vice Chancellors from the Southern University Land-Grant Campus and representatives from several USDA agencies.

Residents were able to submit written questions, as well as ask questions directly to the panel.

Many of the questions asked pertained to the USDA’s Farm Bill, USDA’s housing assistance programs, school and community gardening and youth enrichment programs.

“We will provide two youth from the Town of White Castle the opportunity to participate in our ‘Cultivating Leadership Innovation by Motivating Agricultural Talent Education’ (CLIMATE) Program,” said Dawn Mellion-Patin, Ph.D., Vice Chancellor for Extension and Outreach at the SU Ag Center, when asked about assistance for youth in the Town of White Castle. “This is a five week residential program for high school students which aims to improve ACT scores and introduces the students to careers in the agricultural industry,” she added.

White Castle Mayor Gerald Jermarr Williams provided greetings to the attendees; White Castle Mayor-Pro Temp, Barbara O’Bear, provided a welcome and presided over the program and Phills introduced the panelists and moderated the session.

The Southern University Agricultural Land-Grant Campus is comprised of the Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center and the Southern University College of Agricultural, Family and Consumer Sciences.

The Campus’ programs focus on, but are not limited to:

•           Sustainable Agricultural Systems
•           Community and Economic Development
•           Health and Nutrition
•           Family and Human Development
•           Urban Forestry and Natural Resources
•           Youth Development

The White Castle Listening Session was the first of several sessions that will be held throughout the state in the coming months.

For additional information about the Southern University Land-Grant Campus and its programs and services, visit our website at or call us at 225-771-2242.

Photos from the listening session are available here.


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