Two of the biggest challenges Central New York and the Mohawk Valley face for a prosperous future are retaining our youth after graduation and maintaining our rich farming heritage. Three area BOCES programs are combining their efforts to tackle both of those challenges with a special one day event, Farming Your Future.

Dubbed, “where agriculture meets education,” the program will be held at the Herkimer County Fairgrounds in Frankfort on Wednesday, May 17 from 8:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. The Schools to Careers program exposes students to many fields of opportunity, but on this day, the focus will be on the world of agriculture.  We were fortunate enough to get a chance to talk with 3 of the key drivers behind the program, School To Careers Director Chris Groves, STC liaison and worked based learning coordinator MaryBeth Napolitano and STC educational specialist Janelle D'Aoust about the activities of the day.

Dr. Groves says, "agriculture has grown far from just milking cows and plowing fields." That's why the day will feature 4 agriculture domains with many exhibitors and vendors that are experts in a wide range of career fields associated with each domain.

1. Technology and Equipment
2. End Products and Forestry
3.Animal Care and Livestock
4. Horticulture and Plant Science

He adds, “Students will be exposed to potential careers in agriculture, agritourism and agribusiness and learn that there are plentiful opportunities right here in our region.” It’s anticipated that about 1,200 students in grades 6-10 from the three-BOCES region will attend.  You can see the complete list of vendors and exhibitors, apply to be part of the program and get more details at the BOCES website.

If you're interested in attending the day as a student, contact your school for more information. If you're a vendor that would look to be part of the program, contact the Herkimer BOCES School To Careers program at 315-867-2202.


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