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SOWING GOOD SEEDS LINCOLN UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI - COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE, ENVIRONMENTAL AND HUMAN SCIENCES MONTHLY HIGHLIGHTS FOR JUNE 2021

“No person shall be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, veteran status, genetics, or disability in employment or in any program or activity conducted or funded by Lincoln University Cooperative Extension.”

We'll See You at the Fair!

AUGUST 12 through AUGUST 22

Missouri State Fairgrounds

2503 W 16th St - Sedalia, MO 65301

AGRICULTURAL BUILDING

Bringing Our Research and Expert Knowledge of Everything "Agriculture" and "Community Empowerment" for a Healthier and Prosperous Tomorrow

Funding Awarded to Assist Limited Resource Farmers/Ranchers, Small-Scale Packinghouses and Others in the Food Chain Industry

In a collective effort to provide education and training on the spread, prevention and recovery remediation of COVID-19, Lincoln University of Missouri was one of nineteen HBCUs (Historical Black Colleges and Universities) that received grant funding from the $1 million Rapid Response grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Dr. Jessica-Epple Farmer, Assistant Professor of Animal Science at LU was one of several co-project directors on this successful grant project.

Funded recipients will develop programs to aid educate underserved populations across the country. Lincoln University’s allocation of $21,429 will aid in their efforts to develop programs to decrease hardships on heavily impacted communities in their designated regions in Missouri.

Experienced training staff from Lincoln University Cooperative and Extension will provide resources and training aimed at small-scale limited resource and minority farmers/ranchers, small-scale packinghouses and processors, distributors, farmers markets, Community Supported Agriculture programs, and small retailers that directly delivery to consumers.

With the support of a one-year, one-million-dollar Rapid Response grant award from NIFA (National Institute of Food and Agriculture), the HBCU’s will develop programs to decrease hardships on heavily impacted communities in their regions. Lincoln University of Missouri was allotted $21,429 to initiate programs that will serve targeted markets, which will include small-scale limited resource and minority farmers/ranchers, small-scale packinghouses and processors, distributors, farmers markets, Community Supported Agriculture programs, and small retailers that directly delivery to consumers.

LU also received two additional grant awards from Extension Foundation through the Extension Collaborative on Immunization Teaching & Engagement (EXCITE) program. This funding is to promote the efforts of the USDA-NIFA, CDC and Cooperative Extension’s efforts to bring vaccine education and awareness to rural America.

Project Director – Dr. Jessica Epple-Farmer

The EXCITE program serves all land-grant universities through two sets of activities: (1) system-wide engagement with the CDC’s Vaccinate with Confidence communication campaign and (2) selected adult immunization education pilot projects.

Activity 1 ($27,000 for one year) – “Using a Griot Storyteller to Reduce COVID Vaccine Hesitancy in Rural and Urban Black Missourians” to address COVID hesitancy.

Activity 2 ($200,000 for two years) - “Using Griot Storytellers to Reduce Vaccine Hesitancy” to address vaccine hesitancy for COVID booster, influenza, shingles, and pneumonia injections.

The Co-Project Directors on this grant project were:

  • Ms. Sarah Eber, Nutrition and Health Program Coordinator
  • Dr. Raquel Lourencon, Assistant Professor of Animal Science
  • Ms. Yvonne Matthews, Cooperative Extension Associate Administrator
  • Ms. Marion Halim-Tier, Regional Coordinator (Kansas City Impact Center)
  • Ms. Brenda Robinson-Echols, Regional Coordinator (Southeast Office)

Cover Crop Research at LU

LU Professor Discusses Best Practices for Organic Produce Farming

Dr. Frieda Eivazi (LU Professor of Soil Science)

On June 10, Dr. Frieda Eivazi (LU Professor of Soil Science) research work on cover crops, including ways to terminate (cut) such crops. She and her research technician Mr. William Doggett were pictured observing vegetable crops grown at LU’s Busby’s Farm in Jefferson City.

The article focused on the knowledge she and her team provide to assist limited resource organic vegetable producers in various areas of Missouri.

To gain more insight, please read the full New Tribune article

EPA Provides Technical Assistance to Help Local Neighborhood with Food Disparity

EPA has selected Lincoln University Cooperative Extension, Human Nutrition and Health Programs in the College of Agriculture, Environment and Human Sciences at Lincoln University and Building Community Bridges as one of 13 partner communities out of 97 applicants. The 2021 recipient communities include California, Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington.

Building Community Bridges, a community-based organization in Jefferson City, Missouri has partnered with Lincoln University Cooperative Extension, the City of Jefferson, and community members who are committed to protect the beautiful Missouri River Valley while supporting healthy lifestyles and micro economies. In alignment and support of the city’s mission and the Activate Jefferson City 2040 plan, the convergence of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) local food system, Local Foods, Local Places, will provide technical assistance to build on current efforts to revitalize the economically challenged Southside neighborhood in the wake of the 2019 tornado and COVID-19.

The Jefferson City community has a vision of thriving neighborhoods where the lifestyle supports urban agriculture, food access, good nutrition, gainful employment, academic performance, and a strong economy through the development and implementation of a sustainable local food system. This project directly influences social determinates of health to reduce the disparity gap. Outcomes from Local Foods, Local Places will help translate that vision into a reality.

Community Gardening

TRAIN-THE-TRAINER WORKSHOP

Developing a Shared Vision for Healthier, More Thriving Communities

The need for sustainable food production and better nutrition has taken the center stage in national discourse. Food security and safety are more critical than ever since COVID-19. The ripple effect from the pandemic disrupted the supply chain and at the same time demonstrated the imminent need to develop locally-based sustainable food systems, underscoring the importance of innovative agricultural initiatives to feed the most vulnerable populations.

In April 2021, an idea was born out of a discussion to bring community leaders together to teach and empower them to return to their communities and use urban agriculture and community gardens to reduce food insecurity, improve nutrition, develop local food systems, and foster a sense of community to reduce violence and substance abuse.

As a result of the discussion, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension (LUCE) organized a successful two-day (June 16 and June 17, 2021), train-the-trainer workshop for key community leaders and selected state legislators. This idea was conceived by Ms. Sheryl Maxwell (LUCE Program Educator – Charleston), Ms. Yvonne Matthews (LUCE Associate Administrator), and Dr. Majed El-Dweik (Dean of the College of Agriculture, Environmental, and Human Sciences).

Lincoln University College of Agriculture used the train-the-trainer workshop platform to develop a shared vision of healthy, thriving communities using urban agriculture. A combination of informational workshops, tours, and events demonstrated how a partnership with Lincoln University could provide educational and training support.

To ensure their goals for success, LU will assist in developing plans to improve health equity and socioeconomic conditions in their communities. These types of projects can also foster a love of learning and support vocations in agriculture. The workshop challenged participants to serve as ambassadors for unity, community development and local food systems in partnership with Lincoln University College of Agriculture, Environmental and Human Sciences.

This workshop was made possible with the support of the following:

  • Missouri State Highway Patrol
  • Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services
  • Office of Minority Health
  • Missouri Department of Mental Health
  • Division of Behavior Science
  • Missouri Department of Social Services
  • Ameren Missouri
  • United States Department of Agriculture/NIFA
  • Ole Tyme Produce
  • DRPAM J. Transport LLC
  • Samaritan Center
  • Immaculate Conception Church
  • Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture
  • Carver Farm Staff
  • Lincoln University Cooperative Extension
  • Lincoln University Cooperative Research
  • Carla’s Embroidery
  • USA Tours
  • Sodexo
  • Ms. Chakyra David

Collaborative Efforts to Assist Missouri's Black Farmers

The ISFOP program hosted a listening session at Guiding Light Baptist Church of Christ in Fulton, Missouri. The church is led by Rev. Charles Jackson. The meeting began with a welcome and a short video clip of Mr. Wayne Hall, a Black cattle farmer in the Southeast region with over 80 head of cattle on about 100 acres of land.

Mr. Hall praised LU Cooperative Extension for their assistance in informing minority farmers about the many programs that Lincoln University has to offer as well USDA programs. During a recent “listening session” that was hosted in Charleston, Missouri, Dr. Clement Akotsen-Mensah (LU State IPM Specialist and Director of Innovative Small Farmer's Outreach Program) gave an overview of the ISFOP program and the importance of utilizing the expertise of the farm specialists and farm outreach workers within their region. Ms. Yvonne Matthews (LU Cooperative Extension Associate Administrator) was the facilitator of this listening session.

Mr. Dan Gesieke (Regional FSA Representative) also attended the session. Mr. Gesieke is in charge of 18 FSA offices throughout the State of Missouri. He talked directly to the farmers about utilizing the FSA programs and completing a business plan. He stated that any footwork that a farmer can do before applying can help expedite the process. He discussed the Farm Bill and the funding opportunities available for individuals to apply. He, however, mentioned that the program is on hold at this time.

Mr. Gesieke gave out business cards and was really excited about being able to work with the Missouri Black Farmers Network and making sure that future listening session across the state will invite FSA personnel to speak directly to farmers about available programming.

Dr. Ye Su (Lincoln University Cooperative Research Assistant Professor – Agribusiness) gave a presentation on the USDA Black Farmers Debt Relief Program Forgiveness and included the entire American Rescue Act. The information in which the farmers were tuned into were the American Rescue Plan for agriculture and food. The four focal points were delivering nutrition assistance across America, ensuring equity for farmers of color, supporting farmers, strengthening the food supply chain, strengthening infrastructure housing, and health care in rural America.

Ms. Yvonne Matthews led the listening session by asking the question as to whether the information provided met the expectations of the participants. The local farmers stated that a great deal of information was well presented. According to one session attendee, Dr. Cooper (retired medical doctor) it is important to look for additional assistance to help struggling farmers who own their land debt-free.

The listening session also addressed farm management from an economic and business standpoint. Ms. Matthews assured the farmers that Lincoln University can assist in helping to develop business plans for their farms. She further stated that it is important for growers to take advantage of the services Lincoln University ISFOP provides so that their farm will be productive and sustainable.

Listening, asking, collaborating, and offering solutions were initial steps toward solving the many issues faced by Black farmers, particularly in Missouri. The ISFOP team would like to thank Ms. Matthews for doing a great job as the facilitator and for providing leadership for the entire LUCE program, the Regional FSA Office, the regional Farm Service Agency, and Dr. Ye Su for providing essential information to the attendees, and Rev. Charles Jackson and the welcoming members of Guiding Light Baptist Church of God and Christ.

The entire LU Team would like to all the members of the Missouri Black Farmers Network that continues to recruit and support the mission of Lincoln University ISFOP, and a special thanks to Dr. Majed El-Dweik, Dean of the College of Agriculture, Environmental and Human Sciences for his support, encouragement and leadership as we continue to listen to the needs of our minority farmers across the State of Missouri.

2021 Gardening Entrepreneurship Series

Final Sessions Held for the 2021 Spring/Summer Gardening Season

Webinar presentations by Dr. Clement Akotsen-Mensah and Dr. Jaimin Patel
Soil delivery to Central Missouri resident

JUNE 10 - Session 1

Garden Health Management

Facilitator: Dr. Clement Akotsen-Mensah, "Agroecological Pest Management"

JUNE 10 - Session 2

Facilitator: Dr. Jaimin Patel, “Plant Pathology in the Garden”

JUNE 17

Health and Food Safety

Facilitators: Ms. Sarah Eber “Gardening Products and Homesteading Harvest Management” and Ms. Cindy Borgwordt, “Value Added and Commercial Kitchen”

Extending Farmer-to-Consumer Knowledge to Help Latino Missouri Farmers

On June 11, the Agricultural Economics and Marketing program offered a farm visit to Latino farmers at Middleton’s All Natural Meats Farm in Mount Vernon, Missouri.

The in-person session enhanced Latino farmers’ knowledge and understanding of a farmer-to-consumer marketing model. Mr. David Middleton (LU Farm Outreach Worker) hosted the farm visit. Language translation was available for both English and Spanish speaking attendees.

For more information, contact Dr. Eleazar Gonzalez at gonzaleze@lincolnu.edu.

Making Life Safer in Rural Communities

4-H Promotes Safety First!

Safety Day Staff  (Ms. Laveta Lockridge, Ms. Mariann Wright, and Ms. Dawn Williams)

If anyone had driven by South Elementary School in Kennett on Friday, June 18, they would have seen a crowd of third, fourth and fifth graders engaged in learning activity stations in the nearby park. This was the special day reserved for Dunklin County participants of the Bootheel 4-H to take part in 4-H Progressive Agriculture Safety Day.

The mission of the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day is simple -- to provide education, training, and resources to make rural life safer and healthier for children and their communities.

The Safety Day provides training and resources for local communities to conduct one-day safety and health programs. Safety Days are designed to be age appropriate, hands-on fun, and safe for children.

ATV Safety Training

When Mariann Wright, 4-H Area Educator, heard of the Progressive Agriculture Foundation and its efforts, she jumped at the chance to host an event locally. As the Event Coordinator, she approached area businesses and individuals to gain support for this activity and was pleased at the generous response.

Fire Safety Training
Learning to work as a team

In this inaugural year for the Safety Day, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension (LUCE) 4-H partnered with the summer school program at South Elementary School in Kennett, Missouri. Principal Andi Maddox incorporated the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day material into the summer school curriculum.

Underground Utilities Training

During the event, students learned about a variety of safety topics by visiting activity stations. Each station was facilitated by a local business or organization that taught a topic related to its mission.

ATV Safety – M2 Outdoors

Farm Equipment Safety – Baker Implement Case IH

Fire Safety – Kennett Fire Department

First Aid – SEMO Health Network

Food Safety – LUCE EFNEP

Hidden Hazards – MU Extension

Home Alone – Dunklin County Caring Council

Roadway Safety – MoDot and Kennett Health Department

Tractor Safety – Legacy John Deere

Underground Utilities – City, Light, Gas, and Water

Students rotated through the stations for a full day of fun and learning. Popular among participants was the Food Safety station facilitated by LUCE staff, Laveta Lockridge and Dawn Jordan. Their activity, “Don’t Remove the Label,” was interactive and required critical thinking. Students examined labels to determine use and ingredients of products that look similar to each other. They then used their detective skills to identify those same products without labels.

Lunch for all volunteers was sponsored by Baker Implement and served by a local food vendor, Lupita’s. Legacy John Deere and Farm Credit Southeast Missouri gave financial support for equipment and supplies.

Each child left with a 2021 Progressive Agriculture Safety Day t-shirt and take-home bag stuffed with safety items and fun objects donated by area partners.

Safety supplies and literature from sponsors

Fifty-four volunteers reported 324 hours executing this event. The Safety Day involved 116 area youth who learned about safety, safety hazard, and Lincoln University youth programs.

The Bootheel 4-H Progressive Agriculture Safety Day was part of LUCE’s celebration of National Safety Month during the month of June. The intention of National Safety Month is to provide a safer neighborhood by increasing awareness of hazards and solutions.

Most people know someone who has been affected by an accident. Unfortunately, the majority of harmful and sometimes fatal incidents could have been prevented with a few simple safety precautions. The shared goal of LUCE 4-H in the Bootheel and the Progressive Agriculture Foundation was to bring safety and health information to the communities that desperately need it.

At the end of the event, each participant and volunteer received a take-home bag stuffed with safety items from the event sponsors. Because of the enthusiasm of volunteers, donors, and sponsors, this event will be planned for 2022. Ms. Wright and LUCE staff in the Bootheel look forward to this continued partnership with the Progressive Agriculture Foundation.

The Safety Day included the Following Workshops:

First Aid: At the First Aid station, students had the opportunity to assemble personal first aid kits.

Tractor Safety: Getting to sit in a tractor from Case IH and honk the horn was a highlight of the Tractor Safety station.

Underground Utilities: The local utility company made learning about underground utility safety fun with an interactive game.

Food Safety: The Food Safety station was facilitated by LUCE’s Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) staff.

ATV Safety: Understanding the hazards of ATV and UTV was the focus of the ATV Safety station.

Fire Safety: Participants heard from firefighters about how to prevent home fires and what to do in an emergency situation.

Evaluations: The all- day event finished with students and volunteers completing an event evaluation.

Lincoln University Cooperation Extension sincerely thanks each organization for their participation in this fun and meaningful youth project.

St. Louis Urban Impact Center EFNEP Program Goes the Extra Step to Ensure Nutritious Family Meals

Staying Healthy...Even on a Limited Food Budget

In a joint project with ISFOP-Urban Agriculture Initiative, the LU Cooperative Extension, St. Louis Urban Impact Center’s Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) and its participants were recent recipients of plants and seedlings from Theodora Farms in Godfrey in Illinois. These container gardens were delivered to twenty-five families who would be attending upcoming training classes conducted by the Center.

Miranda Duschack and Jennifer Davis in front of filled and planted-out garden bags. There are six rows of garden bags, each row is for one participating family.
The start of a great gardening project
Garden fresh tomatoes...a good source of essential vitamins
Delicious greens cooked fresh from the garden

Eighteen of the families attended the five scheduled Gardening and Nutrition training classes taught by Ms. Miranda Duschack (Small Farm Specialist) and Ms. Jennifer Davis (Nutrition Program Assistant). The classes were developed in a hybrid format, allowing for a combination of Zoom and in-person class sessions.

Urban Buds: City Grown Flowers - St. Louis, MO

Participants of the program were also given an opportunity to tour Urban Buds, a farmer-florist company located in the St. Louis area.

It is EFNEP’s continuing goal to educate participants on how to grow their own fruits and vegetables as a way to incorporate produce into nutritious and hearty family recipes.

Food safety and food preservation instructions were also provided to help maintain nutritional value during time periods of storage.

Collaborations with Community Leaders to Bridge the Gap

The St. Louis Urban Impact Center is pleased to announce their newest collaborations with the alderwoman of the 1st Ward in Bellefontaine Neighbors, Rev. Dinah Tatman; Police Chief of Bellefontaine Neighbors, Colonel Jeremy Ihler; and St. Louis County Library’s Mobile Unit Manager, Ms. Crystal Harris.

This collaboration aims to bridge the gaps between youth and families, the judicial system, and the community. The collaboration will also give participants in the A.S.S.E.T. (Agriculture, Social Justice, Science, Entrepreneurship, and Technology) Summer Enrichment Program exposure to swimming, golfing, tennis, experiential field trips, and a book mobile equipped with WIFI.

The 2021 Summer Enrichment Program will also include three new exciting educational components to its program: Camp Kangaroo, Social Justice Education, and EFNEP Nutrition and Health.

Introducing STEM Programs with Fizzy, Foamy Fun

Early Learning Experiences in STEM

Science is Fun for Southeast Youth

The LUCE Caruthersville Office's 4-H Activity Night kicked off with a fun-filled evening of chemistry and comradery at the St. John A.M.E Church in Kennett, Missouri.

Youth in elementary school grades 2nd through 5th were invited to participate in the evening event under the supervision of Ms. Mariann Wright (4-H Educator/Youth Development). Additional volunteers were present to assist with meals and coaching.

The project introduced youth to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) concepts with two demonstrations pertaining to chemical reactions. Youth created a colorful foam fountain by using yeast as a catalyst to produce a chemical reaction.

Ms. Mariann Wrights explains all the ingredients for the learning project

The second activity for the night expanded on this concept in the making of fizzing bath bombs. Participants prepared bath bombs and created attractive packaging to be given as Mother’s Day gifts.

Each participant had a role in making each science project a great success

This outreach experience from a faith-based group drew volunteers from the church and relatives of 4-H participants.

Participants learn the importance of teamwork

This collaboration is intended to be an ongoing 4-H club that will increase the number of new members in the 2nd to 5th grade level age group. The club will explore the critical issues that are the foundation for LUCE programs.

Teaching youth about research-based topics will promote changes in family groups. This was the purpose for recruiting volunteer family members and church leaders. A memorandum of agreement was signed with this local church to reinforce support of this LUCE 4-H effort.

Participants discuss their plans to make the final product a gift for a special someone

There will be an ongoing effort to include this age group in 4-H, adding more youth who are in grades 2nd through 5th. This club will explore the critical issues that are the foundation for LUCE programs.

All participants left feeling proud of their final product and the lessons learned during the activity.

Sharing the Teaching Principles of Lincoln University for Future Leaders

A Taste of the Past

During the first week of the Lincoln Summer Camp in Caruthersville, youth contributed to a LU Cooperative ISFOP (Innovative Small Farmer's Outreach Program) project in the neighboring town of Kennett, Missouri.

Mr. Jim Shepard and his Happy Helpers

Mr. Jim Shepard, Farm Outreach Worker and Horticulture Area Educator, spearheaded the “Taste of the Past” project in collaboration with Virgie and Leonard’s Place, a non-profit, social services organization in Kennett.

Mr. Shepard’s work is visible throughout southeast Missouri as he promotes research and teaching principles of Lincoln University.

Mr. Shepard introduces to demonstrates the use of farming tools before starting the planting project

A Taste of the Past is a project made possible through a land donation from Mr. and Mrs. Fred and Jennie Gilmer. The demonstration is located on Baldwin Street. Campers from Lincoln Summer Camp visited the site and identified the paw-paw, plum, and pear plantings. 4-H Area Educator Ms. Mariann Wright introduced the campers to these native Missouri trees and their historical significance.

The group proceeded to the Kennett Community Garden located in the next block. After demonstrating proper step-by-step planting instructions, the youth used Mr. Shepard’s techniques to successfully establish seedlings of sunflowers and buckwheat in designated areas.

Caruthersville Lincoln Summer Camp staff (Left to Right): George DeMyers, Mariann Wright, and Dawn Jordan) with Campers

This project and other types of hands-on, adventurous activities are a part of the youth camp experience in the Bootheel.

Lincoln University ISFOP Collaborates with Missouri Black Farmers Network to Help Southeast Region Farmer

Lincoln University ISFOP and the Missouri Black Farmers Network assisted with the installation of curtains and doors to Mrs. Gloria Blackmon’s high tunnel located on her Southeast Missouri farm.

Involved in this project were youth volunteers from the Hope Center in Sikeston, Missouri who were very instrumental in the completion of the project. At the start of the project, Dr. Touria Eaton (Horticulture State Extension Specialist) spoke on the benefits of high tunnel usage and plant growth outcomes.

Youth are given one-on-one, step-by-step instruction
Mr. David Middleton (Farm Outreach Worker) ensures instructions are properly followed

The youth participants are part of Lincoln University Cooperative Extension Youth Development program in Sikeston. Dr. Touria Eaton and Dr. Jaimin Patel (Assistant Professor of Plant Pathology) supervised the project and conducted workshops throughout the day.

Dr. Touria Eaton and farm owner Ms. Gloria Blackmon

The youth participants received valuable information and hands-on training while completing work on the high tunnel. Mr. Jim Shepard (Area Educator – Horticulture), Mr. David Middleton (Farm Outreach Worker – Southeast Region), Mr. Mike Crowden (Farm Worker) and Mr. Shon Bishop (Farm Worker) mentored the students during the construction.

Youth participant receiving step-by-step instructions

The students were empowered after the work was completed, receiving many compliments from the ISOFP staff. This event was truly a team effort and a great intergenerational learning experience for all. Many thanks went out to LUCE-Sikeston Regional Coordinator, Mrs. Brenda Echols for student recruitment and to Mrs. Blackmon for her warm reception and hospitality.

Summer Project...Where learning is part of the fun

Listening Sessions to Hear the Concerns of Missouri Black Farmers

Discussions from June 29 Central Missouri ISFOP Listening Session

The ISFOP program hosted a listening session at Guiding Light Baptist Church of Christ in Fulton, Missouri. The church is led by Rev. Charles Jackson. The meeting began with a welcome and a short video clip of Mr. Wayne Hall, a Black cattle farmer in the Southeast region with over 80 head of cattle on about 100 acres.

Mr. Hall praised LU Cooperative Extension for their assistance in informing minority farmers about the many programs that Lincoln University has to offer as well USDA programs.

Ms. Yvonne Matthews (LU Cooperative Extension Associate Administrator) facilitated the session

During a recent listening session that was hosted in Charleston Missouri, Dr. Clement Akotsen-Mensah (LU State IPM Specialist and Director of Innovative Small Farmer's Outreach Program (ISFOP), gave an overview of the ISFOP program and the importance of utilizing the expertise of the farm specialists and farm outreach workers within their region. Ms. Yvonne Matthews, LU Cooperative Extension Associate Administrator, was the facilitator of the listening session.

Mr. Dan Gesieke, Regional FSA representative, also attended the session. Mr. Gesieke is in charge of 18 FSA offices throughout the State of Missouri. He talked directly to the farmers about utilizing the FSA programs and completing a business plan. He stated that any foot work that a farmer can do before applying can help expedite the process. He discussed the Farm Bill and the funding opportunities available for individuals to apply. He, however, mentioned that the program is on hold at the moment.

Mr. Gesieke gave out business cards and was really excited about being able to work with the Missouri Black Farmers Network and making sure that future listening session across the state will invite FSA personnel to speak directly to farmers about available programming.

Dr. Ye Su, Lincoln University Cooperative Research Assistant Professor gave a presentation on the USDA Black Farmers Debt Relief Program Forgiveness and included the entire American Rescue Act. The information in which the farmers were tuned into were the American Rescue plan for Agriculture and Food. The four focal points were delivering nutrition assistance across America, ensuring equity for farmers of color, supporting farmers, strengthening the food supply chain, strengthening infrastructure housing, and health care in rural America.

Ms. Yvonne Matthews, the LU Cooperative Extension Associate Administrator led the listening session by asking the question as to whether the information provided met the expectations of the participants. The local farmers stated that a great deal of information was presented, but it was important to Dr. Cooper continue to look for assistance to help struggling farmers who own their land debt-free.

The listening session also addressed farm management from an economic and business standpoint. Ms. Matthews assured the farmers that Lincoln University can assist in helping to develop business plans for their farms. She further stated that it is important for growers to take advantage of the services Lincoln University ISFOP provides so that their farm will be productive and sustainable.

Listening, asking, collaborating, and offering solutions were initial steps toward solving the many issues faced by Black farmers, particularly in Missouri. The ISFOP team would like to thank Ms. Matthews for doing a great job as the facilitator and for providing leadership for the entire LUCE program, the Regional FSA Office, the regional Farm Service Agency, and Dr. Ye Su (LU Assistant Professor – Agribusiness) for providing essential information to the attendees, and Rev. Charles Jackson and the members of Guiding Light Baptist Church of God and Christ in Holt Summit, Missouri.

The entire LU team all would like to all the members of the Missouri Black Farmers Network that continue to recruit and support the mission of Lincoln University ISFOP and a special thanks to Dr. Dweik, the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Environmental and Human Sciences for his support, encouragement and leadership as we continue to listen to the needs of our minority farmers across the State of Missouri.

Amazing Hands-on Projects by Students Working in Aquaculture

Training for Careers in Agriculture

Students in the College of Agriculture receive a vast amount of observation experience and hands-on training.

Three students in particular have recently spent many hours working on various projects in the LU Aquaculture Program, led by Dr. James Wetzel, Aquaculture Program Coordinator.

Ms. Williams cutting the legs of the metal stand that the fish tanks are going to be placed on

Ms. Tuesday Williams, an Animal Science major has worked in Aquaculture for over a year. She has performed work in both LU Cooperative Research and LU Cooperative Extension. She also works in fish production and fish processing for various farmers markets.

Ms. Williams mastering an electric saw

Michael Smith, an Animal Science major, works for Aquaculture exclusively on our fish market, producing, and processing.

He has taken a lead role alongside Staff Member Mr. August Timpe in developing and expanding the fish market at LU. Currently, he is in Alaska on an internship where he has been working long hours processing salmon for various markets.

Mr. Smith is also involved in the LU MANRRS (Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Science) organization.

The Aquaculture Program is also fortunate to have Ms. Emma Haenchen, an Agriculture (Plant Science) major who has worked in Aquaculture for at least one year.

She currently assists LU Research Technician Mrs. Marrianne Timpe in the setup of the new green houses on the LU campus. She previously gained experience working on research projects in Aquaculture.

Recently Published Research Articles

Abua Ikem, Olukayode James Ayodeji, James Wetzel. Human health risk assessment of selected metal(loid)s via crayfish (Faxonius virilis; Procambarus acutus acutus) consumption in Missouri. Heliyon 8 (2021) e07194.

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2021.e07194

Ayodeji, O.J., Ikem, A., Wetzel, J. et al. Sex-specific and inter-species differences in the accumulation and distribution profile of metal(loid)s in crayfish specimens. Toxicol. Environ. Health Sci. (2021).

https://doi.org/10.1007/s13530-021-00098-2

Credits:

Created with images by MabelAmber - "dutch landscape ditch waterway" • paulbr75 - "string beans for sale market" • artisano - "planting environment nature" • BW_n_MT - "coffee desk business" • Ben_Kerckx - "seasonal worker worker farmer" • LV11 - "watering can garden tool green jug" • avitalchn - "child kids children" • truthseeker08 - "hands team united" • Alexas_Fotos - "telephone handset phone models" • BarbaraJackson - "dolly varden fish fishing"