This summer, eight undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds across the country received full-time research positions with CFANS through the Sustainability Opportunities for Agricultural Research - Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduates (SOAR-REEU) program, which aims to close the agricultural career gap for youth from underrepresented groups.
Students attended seminars, participated in field work, performed data analysis, and gave final poster presentations to share their individual projects. “I am in awe of the brilliant and humble people I have met,” program participant Karen Joy said. “We are surrounded by resources and many different disciplines of science and nature that I am eager to have access to and receive wisdom from. I am invigorated by hands-on learning, spending time outdoors, playing in the dirt, and soaking up knowledge.”
Associate professor Julie Grossman, PhD, and her fellow horticultural science colleagues — Mary Rogers, PhD, Laura Shannon, PhD, and Eric Watkins, PhD — will lead this summer research program over five years with the goal of offering 50 total students from around the U.S. a chance to learn about food systems and agricultural research on the ground. With the assistance of the CFANS Office of Diversity & Inclusion, the 2022 inaugural program year successfully immersed participants in science.
This work is supported by the Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduates Program, project 2022-67037-36640, from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.