CATSKILL — Margaret Smith, 4-H Youth Development Educator, Agriculture and STEM, for Cornell Cooperative Extension of Columbia and Greene Counties has earned a scholarship to attend one of the largest gatherings of educators with a passion for teaching through food and agriculture. The scholarship value is $1,200 and includes National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference registration, transportation, lodging, and 28 hours of CTLE Professional Development Credit.
Aquaculture, school gardens, oxen, whoopee pies, distilleries sustainability, biodiversity and more will be the focus of this year’s National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in Portland, Maine June 26-29. For the first time, New York Agriculture in the Classroom has dedicated scholarship funding to provide 60 New York classroom teachers and CCE educators the opportunity to attend the premier professional development conference about teaching through a lens of food and agriculture.
Smith has been the 4-H Ag and STEM Educator with CCE Columbia and Greene for the past three years. Her exuberance, fun-loving nature, belief in youth development and on-going efforts to share the world of agriculture with youth in Columbia and Greene Counties and beyond were certainly key in her receiving this award. Smith’s program emphasis is to take youth development programming in the areas of agriculture and STEM to youth through all avenues of reach including school classrooms, afterschool programs, libraries, our 4-H club program as well as Special Interest (SPIN) clubs.
During this unique experience educators will network with like-minded colleagues from across the country, participate in more than 13 experiential learning workshops, and bring home resources including the latest technology, methods, and tools for integrating agriculture and food systems into the work they do. This year’s conference theme is “Agriculture for ME – On Land and Sea.” Smith will be joined by two local teachers, Lindsay Meyers from Ichabod Crane Central School and Pamela Coloton from Hunter-Tannersville School District.