News Release Distributed 08/03/12
BATON ROUGE – A new group of the state’s youth began the LSU AgCenter’s Louisiana Young Ag Producers Program last week (July 23-27) while another class completed its year-long journey.
Known as LaYAPP, the program is a one-year, intensive classroom and hands-on, mentor-based experience that introduces high school juniors and seniors to the options available to them in the areas of food and fiber production. It is designed to encourage participants to consider the possibilities of careers in agricultural industries.
“This program is for people with a genuine interest in becoming agricultural producers,” said LaYAPP coordinator Bobby Soileau. “We are giving them the opportunity to learn more about production agriculture through hands-on experience.”
Participants in the program attend two summer institutes on the LSU campus and complete 50 internship hours with a qualified mentor during the school term in which they are enrolled in LaYAPP.
The 2012-2013 group of 13 participants began the program during this year’s summer program July 23-27 on the LSU campus in Baton Ro
Paul Coreil, LSU AgCenter vice chancellor and director of the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service, said he sees the program as an opportunity to get young people interested in careers in agriculture and related fields.
“The face of agriculture is changing,” Coreil said. “The number of producers is decreasing, and their average age is increasing, so it is important that we present students with information about careers in production agriculture.”
Coreil also pointed out the importance of agriculture and forestry to rural economic development and the increasing food and fiber demands of a growing world population.
“The demand for food is expected to steadily increase over the next 40 years, which means encouraging career interest in agriculture and forestry is essential to our future,” he said.
In addition to the LSU AgCenter, major sponsors of the program include the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation and the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry.
Members of the 2012-2013 LaYAPP class are:
Zack Billings, Bogalusa
Cody Effler, Ponchatoula
Thomas Forbes, Jr., Morganza
Cole Frey, Morganza
Lucas Glaser, Torbert
Seth Guillory, Kaplan
George LaCour III, New Roads
Andre’ Lanie, Youngsville
Jamal Livingston, Lafayette
Mason Matirne, St. James
Brandon Parrie, Noble
Melissa Pierce, Kinder
Emily Schenk, Walker
Contact: Bobby Soileau Editor: Tom Merrill
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