11/21/2017 4:59:00 AM Hauser FFA student takes part in World Food event
Delegates from Indiana pose with 2017 World Food Prize Laureate, Dr. Akin Adesina, at the Purdue reception.
From Aleesa Dickerson Hauser FFA advisor
Hauser sophomore Melanie Taylor recently took part in the Global Youth Institute, hosted by the World Food Prize Foundation.
She was chosen for the Indiana delegation based on upon her research and participation with the Purdue Youth Institute, held on Purdue's West Lafayette campus in April. Melanie's research focused on the country of Rwanda, land of 1,000 hills. Because of the hilly terrain, soil nutrients are lost through erosion resulting in poor performing crops.
At the Global Youth Institute, student delegates present and discuss their findings with international experts and their peers, connect with other students from around the world, tour cutting-edge industrial and research facilities, and take part in symposium discussions with global leaders in science, industry and policy.
Melanie presented a system of check logging as a solution to three experts and engaged in discussion with each of them about how this would work logistically in Rwanda. She also listened to peers present their research and asked questions about each proposal.
Each year, around 200 exceptional high school students from across the United States and other countries are selected to participate in the three-day event.
Melanie, along with teacher mentor Aleesa Dickerson, traveled to Des Moines, Iowa, in mid-October to attend where they interacted with Nobel and World Food Prize laureates and discussed pressing food security and agricultural issues with international experts.
Throughout the program, student and teacher delegates participate in the Borlaug Dialogue, a "Davos-style" dialogue which brings together about 1,500 international experts and policy leaders from 65 countries to address cutting-edge challenges in food security and international development.
Delegates to the Global Youth Institute also attend the World Food Prize Laureate Award Ceremony in the historic Iowa State Capitol, as the "Nobel Prize for Food and Agriculture" is awarded in recognition of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.
This year, Purdue's delegation attended a ceremony as Dr Akin Adesina was made the third laureate from Purdue University. He joins Dr. Phillip Nelson and Dr. Gebisa Ejeta among the ranks of World Food Prize winners.
By participating in the Global Youth Institute students are eligible to apply for a prestigious Borlaug-Ruan International Internship, an all-expenses-paid, eight-week hands-on experience, working with world-renowned scientists and policymakers at leading research centers in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.
Since 1998, nearly 300 Borlaug-Ruan Interns have traveled to Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Kenya, Nepal, Peru, Philippines, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, and Turkey to get a firsthand view of pressing food security and nutritional problems in poverty-stricken areas and take part in ground-breaking research.