Discovering Option Careers in Agriculture by means of the E. Kika de la Garza Fellowship

Posted by Marquita Bady, Community Affairs Professional, USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement in

Exploration and Science

Dec 08, 2023

Claire Carpenter at Goat Peak, Washington

A longtime biology instructor at Yakima Valley College (YVC) in Washington state, Claire Carpenter operates with YVC pupils all through their undergraduate investigate. She has led smaller summer season exploration tasks and was fascinated in bringing additional agriculture into both individuals jobs and her lessons.

She was selected as just one of 20 fellows for the U.S. Division of Agriculture’s (USDA) 2022 E. Kika de La Garza (EKDLG) Fellowship Application. The fellowship introduces faculty and staff of Hispanic Serving Establishments like Yakima Valley School  to the USDA sources readily available to them. Fellows then share what they learned with college students and colleagues at their household establishments.

Not only did Claire master about USDA plans and means when meeting USDA company staff in Washington, D.C., but as an EKDLG Science Fellow, she also had the chance to spouse with USDA’s Agricultural Research Provider (ARS) laboratory and experimental farm in Wapato, Wash. to analyze the role of insects in transmitting agricultural illnesses. ARS makes use of DNA sequencing to discover the stomach contents of insects to see what they feed on and appraise their performance as pest management agents. This expertise permitted Claire to watch the destruction brought about by uncontrolled plant pests and recognize the worth of USDA investigate in pest regulate. It also gave her perception into the technological programs of agricultural investigate.

Claire also teaches DNA sequencing in her lessons, and she designs to share the encounters and information obtained from this method with her YVC colleagues and learners.

“I imagine that the possibility to get the job done with USDA researchers will inspire foreseeable future jobs that could offer chances for students to knowledge reliable science research early in their scientific and tutorial occupations,” she stated.

In her microbiology courses, she teaches college students about the great importance of insect vectors in the transmission of human illnesses. She now contains plant pathogens in class articles about vector-mediated illness transmission.

“Many students are not looking at agricultural research or policy as a job, most likely mostly due to the fact they have small conception of it as a viable scientific job route,” she claimed. “Many Yakima Valley Higher education  students with an interest in science will advantage from mastering about these and other vocation options for doing significant operate with USDA.”

The application window for the 2024 EKDLG Fellowship System opened before this week. Instruction Fellowships are open up to faculty and staff members at Hispanic-Serving Establishments, who will go to a a person-week system in Washington, D.C. from July 8-12, 2024. 

Science Fellowships are open up to science school at Hispanic-Serving Institutions. Science fellows not only go to the a single-7 days software in Washington, D.C. but also shell out an additional week collaborating with top scientists at a USDA analysis facility. Visit Hispanic Serving Institutions Nationwide Program for far more facts.