The world is rapidly changing and employers look to universities to produce graduates able to solve complex global problems . Thinking proactively, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture identified megatrends or issues that will be critical moving forward: Global Food Security and Hunger; Climate Change; Sustainable Energy; Childhood Obesity; and Food Safety. Future college graduates will need to be ready and capable of solving problems related to these issues that span geopolitical borders.

“At its core, the Graduate Education at the Nexus of Global Horticulture and Human Nutrition to Enhance Community Resilience and Food Security is an initiative to fill the gap that often exists at the nexus of horticulture, human nutrition, and community resilience specifically by creating high-impact multi-cultural experiences for our graduate students and a mechanism for formal collaboration between faculty and students across disciplines at three prestigious institutions.”

Dr. Wayne Mackay

Horticulture and Food Science Department Head, University of Arkansas

Universities have embraced the concept of global-ready graduates, however, traditional globalization strategies such as globally focused courses, study abroad, and travel courses reach only a small number of students. The instructional opportunity addressed by this project is to reach graduate students in food and agricultural sciences by globalizing the curricula with contextually-rich and authentic case studies. This project also creates the first cross-disciplinary distance course in the AG*IDEA consortium, focused on horticulture and human nutrition with a global context.
“My excitement grew every day leading up to the trip. The idea of learning about a different country both in culture and horticulture practices was so enticing. After arriving and spending two weeks submerged in the culture and people, my initial excitement expanded even more. It made me want to go more, to do more, and to help more people in other areas of the world. Timor-Leste was an unforgettable experience and I believe it has helped shape my vision of the future.” Karlee Pruitt

Horticulture Master's Student, University of Arkansas