1026 Building Capacity for Climate Change Education (CCE) and Expanding Research Opportunities in Rural Communities in Tennessee and Kentucky

Wednesday, 10 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 3 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Robert Mark Simpson, Univ. of Tennessee, Martin, Martin, TN; and R. Tewari, J. E. Mehlhorn, B. Parr, and N. Musunuru

The U.S agricultural industry is a major player in the global market, and changes in climate that impact U.S agriculture have implications for both domestic and global food security. Existing studies have revealed a disconnect between agricultural stakeholders and the wider climatological community in the U.S., which impedes the process of making informed decisions in response to climate related changes in agriculture. Furthermore, the topic of climates and climate change is not well-represented in national and state science education standards. We propose a collaborative project that aims to bridge this gap in perception and understanding regarding climate change among stakeholders in rural communities, and to enhance the educational curriculum in high schools and higher education institutes with a focus on climate change. This project aims to utilize the 2016 NLGCA grant opportunity in alignment with the Farm Bill Priority areas 1 and 4 by promoting awareness among stakeholders regarding climate change. The intended beneficiaries for this project are undergraduate and graduate students in agriculture, high school students and educators, and agricultural professionals in the respective areas served by the partnering universities. The final products from this effort will consist of college level courses, dual-credit courses for high schools, educational materials, and information for agricultural stakeholders, with a focus on climate change. The ultimate goal of this project is to assist today’s students, as they become part of the future agricultural workforce, to develop the knowledge, skills, and adaptive strategies required to meet the challenges associated with a changing climate.
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