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Penn State University

This project links well to two graduate programs and two undergraduate majors (Agribusiness Management [AGBM] and Community, Environment and Development [CED]) in the PD’s/co-PIs’ home department.

In the past, the CED capstone course has emphasized urban agriculture, vacant property and economic change in Pittsburgh, while a required AGBM course has analyzed food retailing environments and food access in Pittsburgh. AGBM and CED undergraduates now seek meaningful internship experiences that will ground them in sustainable agribusiness and community development practice and research.

For CED students, especially, productive placements exist with NGOs and community organizations, which may not have resources to pay interns. Active coordination and focus are needed to ensure the frequently invoked "win-win” of experiential learning.

We will engage Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology M.S. and Ph.D. students to work closely with the PD and co-PIs so that both undergraduates and community partners gain from internship arrangements. In developing students’ engagement in active learning opportunities and fostering participation in professional internships, the educational objectives of this project align well with Penn State’s present strategic plan.