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We are excited to announce the 5th annual Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit at the University of Arkansas School of Law!

 

The 2018 Summit is open to American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian youth, ages 15-18 (including recently graduated high school seniors).

Interested participants should apply now to attend the 2018 Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit, which will be held June 7th-14th in Fayetteville, Arkansas, at the University of Arkansas School of Law, home of the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative. Some travel assistance may become available; participants will receive information about this after they are accepted into the program.

This year’s Summit will build on previous Summits, but will be more intensive. The 2018 Summit will be a skills-development focused event that will give attendees an opportunity to do a deep dive in a particular area of food and agricultural production or policy. These four subject matter areas are:

1) Agricultural Business and Finance;

2) Conservation Practices and Planning for Agricultural Production;

3) Agricultural & Food Law and Policy; and

4) Nutrition and Health.

While at the Summit, participants will be led by experts in these areas and will spend their time at the event learning and working on these topics with a small group of their peers. In addition to learning the critical skills they need to be the next generation of Indian Country food and ag leaders in each of these topic areas, all students attending will also receive a full Food Safety Modernization Act training on the Produce Safety Rule during their time at the Summit.

Applications are online now!

The priority deadline for applying to the 2018 Summit is March 1, 2018. Priority students will be allocated additional points in the selection process.

The final deadline for applying to the 2018 Summit is March 15, 2018.

Click the links above to fill out the application online. Questions about the Summit? Contact Erin Shirl on the IFAI staff at eshirl@uark.edu, or call her at 479.575.6572 or 479.575.5128.
The Summit 2018 staff can’t wait to read your applications!
We encourage you to apply if you:

  • are American Indian, Alaska Native, or Native Hawaiian;
  • are between the ages of 15 and 18;
  • are passionate about food and agricultural production, and
  • have the courage to lead their Tribes and communities into the future,

then we want to see you at the 2018 Summit!

 

Spaces are limited, so PLEASE APPLY AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

 

Cost to Attend
All food, lodging, instructional materials and field trip costs will be provided. Depending on the number of students, some travel scholarships will also be provided. However, we need applications as soon as possible to plan for travel needs.

Dates
June 7-14, 2018 (this includes travel dates)

Supporters
Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture, Farm Credit, Natural Resources Conservation Service, USDA, Southern Region Extension Risk Management Education Program

About the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative: The initiative enhances health and wellness in tribal communities by advancing healthy food systems, diversified economic development and cultural food traditions in Indian Country. The initiative empowers tribal governments, farmers, ranchers and food businesses by providing strategic planning and technical assistance; by creating new academic and professional education programs in food systems and agriculture; and by increasing student enrollment in land grant universities in food and agricultural related disciplines. For more information, visit www.indigenousfoodandag.com.

CONTACT:
Erin Shirl
eshirl@uark.edu or (479) 575-6572

 

Native Students to Meet at U of A for 2017 Food and Agriculture Youth Summit

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Nearly 150 Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian students representing 76 tribes nationwide will be at the University of Arkansas School of Law July 16-25 for the fourth annual Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit.

The summit engages students in a wide variety of classroom lectures, hands-on workshops and field activities to educate, develop and empower the next generation of food and agricultural leaders in Indian Country.

The 10-day event is sponsored and organized by the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative at the University of Arkansas School of Law.

Students will hear from guest speakers who present topics including the history of American Indian Agriculture, business planning, ethnobotany and seed preservation, soil conservation, legal issues in Indian Country and the importance of traditional foods.

Speakers include Ross Racine, executive director of the Intertribal Agriculture Council; Ben Meyer, from the national Future Farmers of America; David Winfrey, senior associate general counsel, Walmart; Gary Matteson, vice president, Farm Credit Council; Cris Stainbrook, from the Indian Land Tenure Foundation; Mark Tilsen, president, Tanka Bar; and Anthony Mallott, president and CEO, Sealaska.

As part of the summit students will visit the unique “This Is Hunger” exhibit near Fayetteville’s historic downtown square. The exhibit, sponsored by MAZON: A Jewish Response To Hunger, will be installed  as part of a collaboration with the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative and the exhibit will help students understand how the food insecurity issues they confront in Native communities fit into the greater struggle for national and international food security.

Other highlights of the summit include:

  • A tour of the animal and food sciences labs, horticulture programs and freight farm on the U of A campus from 9-11:30 a.m., Wednesday, July 19.
  • A tour of Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma’s greenhouses, apiary, cattle and bison production and facility and dog training operation in Quapaw, Oklahoma, from 8 a.m.-3 p.m., Friday, July 21.
  • Participation in the “This Is Hunger” traveling exhibit in downtown Fayetteville and tour of the Fayetteville Farmer’s Market from 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday, July 22
  • Interactive agricultural demonstrations at Dagg’s Farm with Intertribal Agriculture Council specialist Steven Bond in Stratford, Oklahoma followed by training from the Chickasaw Nation’s nutrition experts, from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Sunday, July 23.

 

Location

University of Arkansas School of Law in Fayetteville, Arkansas

Hosts

Indigenous Food & Agriculture Initiative, University of Arkansas School of Law

Intertribal Agriculture Council

Supporters

Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture

Farm Credit

Natural Resources Conservation Service, USDA

Southern Region Extension Risk Management Education Program

Cost to Attend

All food, lodging, instructional materials and field trip costs are provided. Depending on the number of students, some travel scholarships will also be provided.

If you have questions, contact Emerald Hames on the IFAI staff at ehames@uark.edu, or call her at 479-575-5128.

 

Check out our TAGBOARD of the 2016 summit!

Native students dive into food and ag business at 2016 leadership summit

Nearly 100 Native American, Alaska native and Native Hawaiian students representing 51 tribes converged on the University of Arkansas School of Law for a unique 10-day leadership summit to learn how food and agriculture policy impacts their tribal communities. The summit, sponsored and organized by the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative, is an annual event in its third year.

Racine

Ross Racine, executive director of the Intertribal Agriculture Council

During the summit, students engaged with a wide variety of guest speakers who presented topics including the history of American Indian Agriculture, business planning, ethnobotany and seed preservation, legal issues in Indian Country, and the importance of traditional foods.

Speakers included IFAI Director Janie Simms Hipp (Chickasaw), Intertribal Agriculture Council Executive Director Ross Racine (Blackfeet), Dale Bumpers College of Agriculture Professor H.L. Goodwin, School of Law Dean Stacy Leeds (Cherokee), Crystal Echo Hawk (Pawnee) from EchoHawk Consulting, Justin Wilson (Choctaw) from the US Dept. of the Interior, Mark Tilsen (Lakota Sioux) from Native American Natural Foods, and Toni Stanger-McLaughlin (Colville) a consulting attorney with the IFAI.

Hipp

Janie Simms Hipp talks to the students agricultural law.

The students were also treated to a presentation by Native American celebrity chef Sean Sherman (Lakota Sioux), also known as The Sioux Chef, who has become a leading advocate of preserving traditional foods and restoration of an indigenous diet. The final speaker of the summit was Arthur “Butch” Blazer (Mescalero Apache), former USDA Deputy Undersecretary for Natural Resources and Environment, who spoke about the importance of tribal leadership.

DownstreamGreenhouse

Students toured the Downstream Casino Greenhouses.

Students also left the classroom to visit several agriculture operations and food businesses including the Cattle Company and Downstream Casino greenhouses of the Quapaw Nation, a Walmart Distribution Center, the U of A animal and food science labs, and the Fayetteville Farmers Market. The summit field trips were capped with a full day excursion to Daggs Farm in Stratford, Okla., where students helped install irrigation systems and learned about small small-scale chicken operations, cultivating ancestral plants, and the importance of good nutrition and healthy lifestyles.

 

StudentLeaders

The 2016 summit Student Leaders

Oldham

Camp Director Odessa Oldham fires up her team before a touch football game.

 

Robert Baldy and IAC Pacific Region TA Specialist Kier Johnson run an automated drip irrigation line at Daggs Farm.

Robert Baldy and IAC Pacific Region TA Specialist Kier Johnson run an automated drip irrigation line at Daggs Farm.

Chef Sean Sherman and the youth and student leaders of the 2016 Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit.

Chef Sean Sherman and the youth and student leaders of the 2016 Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit.

2016 Graduation Photos

Regional Summits

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