University of Illinois students majoring in Agricultural Education are putting into practice the principle of ‘learning by doing’. Students have the opportunity to participate in on-the-job training for two or more days with an agribusiness to learn valuable content area knowledge about various areas of the agriculture industry. The program is designed to help students learn skills from agribusiness professionals that can be applied in the classroom to teach future students. The project is funded by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Growing Agricultural Science Teachers (GAST) grant.
Clayton Carley, a sophomore student in the Parkland Pathways program, completed his experience with Blossom Basket Florist in Urbana, Illinois. “As a future agriculture teacher, I can only teach students what I know. What better way to learn about the industry in order to teach it to the next generation than to be a part of it and experience the work firsthand! The GAST grant has allowed me to do just that -- learning from the best so I can teach the best.” Carley’s experiences at the Blossom Basket helped him learn more about the floriculture industry. “While I am not an expert in the area, I am now much more equipped to teach it to my future students.”
Thanks to funding from the GAST grant, ten different Agricultural Education students will participate in this opportunity.